The Journey of the Paintings

Hitler's cultural policy, art trade and storage in the Salzkammergut during the Nazi era

Three different art exhibitions of a special kind at three locations: During the Second World War, Hitler and the most important Austrian museums and art dealers used the Salzkammergut to bring masterpieces of European art history to safety or to protect museum collections from destruction.

(Original title: Die Reise der Bilder)

Subject to change
The Jouney of the Paintings

Lentos Kunstmuseum Linz (project sponsor)
Elisabeth Nowak-Thaller
(Project Manager / Curator, Lentos)
Birgit Schwarz (expert on Nazi art policy, guest curator, Lentos)
Markus Proschek(Curator Lauffen)
Hemma Schmutz
(Director Museums of the City of Linz, Curator Lauffen)

Lisa Neuhuber (Head of Programme remembrance culture)

March to October 2024
→ opening hours

About the project

The Salzkammergut as a transshipment point and rescue site for works of art

In “The Journey of the Paintings”, the Lentos focuses not only on Hitler’s planned “Führer Museum Linz” and the secret salvage operations, but also on the temporary art camps in St. Agatha, Bad Aussee, Altaussee and Bad Ischl/Lauffen. The exhibition shows a selection of exemplary paintings that were collected for Hitler’s “Führer Museum” and a distribution to museums of the German Reich throughout Europe. They were acquired through purchase, robbery, “Aryanisation” and forced sale and, like Austrian museum collections, stored and saved in the Salzkammergut.

In the Kammerhofmuseum Bad Aussee, the life and work of the Berlin art dealer Wolfgang Gurlitt and his Jewish business partner Lilly Christiansen, who lived in Bad Aussee from 1940 onwards, are dealt with.

In Lauffen, the systematic theft of art, a well-known phenomenon since antiquity and a means of legitimising cultural dominance, will be the subject of works and installations by contemporary artists.


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Opening hours

The journey of the paintings

LENTOS Kunstmuseum Linz

Tue-Sun 10 – 18.00
Thu 10 – 20.00
Mon closed

Wolfgang Gurlitt. Art dealer and profiteer

Kammerhofmuseum Bad Aussee

Tue-Sun 10 – 15.00
Mon closed

The life of things

Altes Marktrichterhaus Lauffen

Wed-Sun 12 – 17 Uhr
Mon-Tue closed