Page 1 – The eternal provisional
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At the front of the balustrade, where on March 15, 1938, the so-called leader
stood, sprouts a tender little plant out of the stone floor. The Altan – in Vienna he will like
Called "Hitler's balcony" – remains unused. Not that there were no plans, this one
Place of Destiny meaningful to play. But the balustrades would have to be raised and the huge
Doors are provided with a climate barrier. Even the soil, which is now slowly nature
to recover, one would have to redevelop. 1.1 million euros would cost, Monika Sommer has
The 44-year-old historian with the birthplace of Linz might need additional space; after all, she should set up nothing less than a house of history in this part of the Vienna Hofburg. But a usable altan would consume almost the entire annual budget provided by the federal government. The "Hitler balcony" may therefore continue to grow.
Monika Sommer took over the management of the House of History in February 2017. Previously, she had researched, curated exhibitions and worked at the Vienna Museum for ten years. On the 10th of November she will open a first exhibition in the future museum premises:
Departure into the unknown – Austria since 1918.
Even the future of the House of History is uncertain before its opening. For the time being last phrase: The national history show should in future be called the House of the Republic and be affiliated to the Parliament instead of the National Library, announced Minister of Culture Gernot Blümel last week. Everything else will be decided next year. In 2019, Director Sommer will receive 1.5 million euros for the running costs instead of the previously promised 1.1 million. That is welcome, but only for comparison: The German House of History has an annual budget of 23 million.
Austria is having a hard time with its museum. Even Karl Renner wanted a museum of the Republic after World War II. It stayed at a showroom. After Renner's death was also closed.
This article is from TIME no. 45/2018. Here you can read the entire issue.
Only half a century later, the idea of a house of the Republic germinated again, when in 1996 the city school council left the Palais Epstein on the Ringstrasse. However, the premises were immediately occupied by the neighboring parliament.
Meanwhile, the best minds of Austrian political and contemporary history research reflected on such a museum. Professors Stefan Karner, Oliver Rathkolb, Manfried Rauchensteiner, Roman Sandgruber and Anton Pelinka brooded on various concepts. Hannes Androsch and Herbert Krejci delivered their own plan, Chancellor Alfred Gusenbauer hired a Canadian consulting firm. The Albertina, the grounds of the old Südbahnhof, the Künstlerhaus, the Arsenal and a vacant plot of land in Argentinierstraße were in constant change as a location.