The Secession Building is located at Friedrichstrasse 12, in Vienna's first district. It was constructed in 1898 by Joseph Olbrich to house a breakaway group of artists who felt they did not fit into the more conservative artistic society of the day. This group of innovated and free thinking artists formed the Secession Movement, from which the building gets its name.
The building is constructed in the Art Noveau style and it certainly makes a change from Gothic and Baroque architecture that predominates much of Vienna. The floor area covers approximately 1000 square meters. The building has very clean lines and although not as opulent as some of Vienna's famous structures, it is not devoid of decoration.
Laurel leaves are a special feature of the building and are found throughout. A feature made from over 3000 gilded laurel leaves and 700 berries hovers over the impressive dome near the entrance. Three Gorgons greet you at the entrance with each having a different symbolic meaning. One is for architecture and the other two represent sculpture and painting.
There are permanent collections available to view all year round and other contemporary exhibitions take place throughout the year. A painting by Gustav Klimt called Beethoven-frieze, spans three walls and was originally made for a temporary exhibition but is now a permanent addition to the building.
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