Thyssen-Bornemisza Art Contemporary (TBAC), founded in 2002, is located in a public park in Vienna and hosts the collection of Francesca von Habsburg. It is described as a haven for contemporary art due its sheer number of works. Yet within, Francesca von Habsburg, who was raised in a family with a long tradition of involvement in the arts, has created a sense of intimacy which makes her extensive collection unique.
As a collector, she builds close relationships with many of the artists and works with them on commissions for site-specific work, supporting the artist’s vision and ideas resulting in works which are unconventional and experimental in nature.
The Foundation has a reputation throughout the world for art projects which have meaning and purpose and, since 2015, has dedicated itself and its resources to drawing attention to the need to protect our natural resources and environment.
The Foundation is located in the Atelier Augarten within a dedicated space TBA21. The Atelier is set in a corner of the Augarten, a large public park situated in Leopoldstadt in Vienna. The park hosts a variety of facilities including the Vienna Boys’ Choir. The Atelier was designed in the 1950s as an artist’s studio to accommodate the Austrian sculptor, Gustinus Ambrosi and contained his workshop, home and museum. The space has been adapted and lends itself to the presentation of large-scale three dimensional works while fostering an atmosphere of intimacy.
TBAC hosts on average two thematic exhibitions a year and works in close partnership with the state-run museum, Belvedere. The aim of this collaboration is to engage in shared cultural activities to spark the appreciation of contemporary art in Vienna and within an international context. In addition, the Foundation organises exhibitions around the world, as well as loaning works and commissions to major international exhibitions. It is these commissions that form an integral part of major international exhibitions, such as the Venice Biennale and documenta, an exhibition of contemporary art which takes place every five years in Kassel. TBA21 itself hosts events and performances and holds a bookshop stocked with selected publications.