This time around, organisers focused on the Vienna International Garden Show taking place at the city’s newly-created Donaupark in 1964. The exhibit, now on display on the museum’s second floor, features photographs from the opening ceremony which had been attended by Austrian President Adolf Schärf, Vienna Mayor Franz Jonas and many more leading politicians and businessmen. Elsewhere in the exhibition room, visitors can find background information on the fair organisers’ intentions. City Hall lawmakers planned to create more green space in Vienna to increase the quality of living.
The Garden Fair was a kick-start to this policy which included the focus on beautiful parks and sport courts free to use. However, the current Wien Museum exhibition does not ignore the dark sides linked with the site where the fair took place. It points out that the committee of organisers back then ignored to mention what happened there during World War Two: Nazis assassinating political rivals. Furthermore, a large number of old photographs present the highlights of the WIG of 1964: a reading hall, a chairlift, a large number of picturesque flowerbeds – and, of course, the Donauturm, which is still the highest building in whole Austria.
“WIG 64. Die grüne Nachkriegsmoderne” – which is located right next to the Wien Museum’s fantastic gallery featuring paintings by Gustav Klimt and Koloman Moser – is a marvellous journey back in time.