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  • Study of Emperor Franz II/I
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History

The history of the museum

The Imperial Furniture Collection, formerly the Imperial-Royal Furniture Storehouse and later the Imperial-Royal Furniture and Materials Depository, today represents a singular combination of storeroom, workshop, administrative body and museum that is unique in the world. 'Depository' in this context means the renovation, upkeep and administration of the holdings that are now accessible to the public in the new museum. The former 'lumber-room of the monarchy' has over the centuries become one of the most important collections of furniture in the world.

1747

Maria Theresa appoints the first Court Furniture Inspector with the duties of inventarising, caring for and transporting the imperial, non-dynastic holdings of furniture

1809

This court office is given the title of Court Furniture Directorate and during the reign of Emperor Franz II/I is also made responsible for the purchase of new items for the furnishing of the imperial palaces.

1901

Emperor Franz Joseph I commissions the construction of the Imperial-Royal Court Furniture Depository at 88 Mariahilfer Straße as the central storage facility for all items of furniture not in current use, as well as workshops and coach-houses.

1919

After the end of the monarchy all the holdings of furniture that are not the personal property of the Habsburg family pass into the ownership of the Republic of Austria. Some of the stocks were used (as they still are) for official state receptions, for example those given by the Federal President of Austria.

1924

A permanent display of selected items is opened at the Federal Furniture Despository as the collection is now known. Divided into sections illustrating various stylistic eras as models for craftsmen to copy, it includes two rooms with Baroque and Empire furniture together with 15 Biedermeier alcoves as illustrations of past styles of furniture and interior decoration in Vienna.

1993

1993 Start of the renovation project. A disused factory building adjacent to the Furniture depository and a Biedermeier house on Andreasgasse are acquired to extend the museum.

1998

Opening of the new museum designed by the architect Alessandro Alverà

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