Josef Maria Auchentaller – Viennese bijoux: a selection of Jugendstil jewelry art highlights published for the first time

Celebrating Auchentaller’s 150th birthday – book presentation at the Leopold Museum

Vienna (OTS) – The evening at the Vienna Leopold Museum was dedicated to a previously little known side to the Secessionist Josef Maria Auchentaller. Most renowned for his depictions of Grado, he was now honored for his efforts as a designer of Jugendstil jewelry and precious everyday objects.

During the presentation, the Managing Director of the Leopold Museum, Peter Weinhäupl, referred to the exhibition "JUGENDSTIL PUR! Josef Maria Auchentaller" held in 2009. Back then, the Leopold Museum dedicated a comprehensive exhibition to Auchentaller, thus taking first steps to “raise the artist out of oblivion and obscurity”. Weinhäupl extended a special welcome to the artist‘s granddaughter, Erika Auchentaller.

Franz Smola, the Leopold Museum’s interim Museological Director, emphasized the museum’s important task of “making Klimt and Schiele’s environment and their fellow artists known all over the world” in its “capacity as a promotor of Viennese art” and expressed his delight about "the great progress made in the reappraisal of Auchentaller’s work".

Following five years of research, Roberto Festi, the curator of the Grado exhibition and editor of the accompanying catalogue, and Alessandro Lovato, the president of the cultural association "Grado ´900", presented the publication "Wiener Bijoux. Schmuck und Design - Josef Maria Auchentaller für Georg Adam Scheid" [Viennese Bijoux, Jewelry and Design - Josef Maria Auchentaller for Georg Adam Scheid]. Along with more than 100 design drawings and painterly works by Auchentaller, the book introduces audiences to objects designed by the artist and executed by the company "G.A. Scheid Gold- und Silber Schmuckfabrik”, including brooches, belt buckles, pendants as well as jewelry boxes, vases and cigarette cases.

The book impressively documents Auchentaller’s contribution to the design and production of fin-de-siècle luxury jewelry and provides a new impetus for the scientific study of Viennese arts and crafts at the transition from the 19th to the 20th century.

Many guests turned out to celebrate Auchentaller’s work, among them Univ.-Prof. Patrick Werkner (University of Applied Arts Vienna), the collector and Auchentaller expert Andreas Maleta, the Grado hoteliers Thomas Soyer (Hotel Savoy) and Carlotta Grigolon (Hotel Ville Bianchi), ENIT coordinator Mara-Ira Riolo as well as Michael Martischnig of the Austrian art publishers Österreichische Kunst- und Kulturverlag. The journalists Gerhard Pucsala, Heribert Purtscher, Oliver H. Stadlbauer, Eva Wrazdil and Johannes Gans were also eager to hear the new findings about Auchentaller’s work.

The exhibition "Wiener Bijoux. Gioielli e design - Schmuck und Design. Josef Maria Auchentaller per/für Georg Adam Scheid“ [Viennese Bijoux, Jewelry and Design - Josef Maria Auchentaller for Georg Adam Scheid] will be shown from 21st June to 1st November 2015 in Grado at the Casa della Musica. The book accompanying the exhibition is available in a bilingual (German/Italian) edition and comprises 192 pages.


Hotel Ville Bianchi

Hotel Savoy Grado

Grand Hotel Astoria


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