The persona of John III Sobieski is inextricably linked with the history of Vienna: as commander-in-chief of the allied relief army, the Polish king freed the city, which had been deemed lost, from the Ottomans’ siege of several weeks on 12 September 1683. With this crucial victory, he went down in the annals of global history. The sovereign of the once-powerful Polish-Lithuanian Commonwealth and a victorious military leader, he became a national figure of identification in his native country, which had meanwhile fallen apart, not least due to Poland’s fateful partitions in the eighteenth century. His fame in Poland continues to this day. In the Habsburg Empire, he was recognized for his share in the city’s successful relief, although the country naturally remained primarily indebted to the emperor, despite the latter’s absence in the battle.
With this exhibition, Poland’s royal residences and the Belvedere seek to jointly pay tribute to this Polish monarch, who played such an important role in Vienna’s past. Various categories of exhibits – paintings, jewellery, decorative art objects, militaria, and memorabilia – are meant to draw a comprehensive and vivid picture of the personality of John III Sobieski for the Viennese public. In addition to biographic background information, the exhibition’s thematic focal points will concentrate on his role as a military commander and as a patron of the arts and sciences. Around 1700, his court painter Martino Altomonte (1659–1745) came to Vienna to work once more for a successful military leader: none other than Prince Eugene of Savoy (1663–1736).
The exhibition is a coopartion between the Belvedere and the four important Polish residences – the Wawel Royal Castle in Kraków, the Royal Castle in Warsaw, the Museum of King John III’s Palace in Wilanów, and the Royal Łazienki Museum in Warsaw.
Curated by Maike Hohn and Konrad Pyzel.
9,00 / 7,00 EUR / children up to 18y free
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