Tiroler Landesmuseum Ferdinandeum (Innsbruck)


Museumstrasse 15

Tel. 0512 59489

Open: Tue- Sun

The Tiroler Landesmuseum Ferdinandeum in Innsbruck, also known as the Ferdinandeum after the then Crown Prince Ferdinand (since 1835 Emperor Ferdinand I), who took over the protectorate, was founded in 1823 as an association under the name Tirolisches Nationalmuseum. One of the initiators was Archduke Johann. The first, original museum building was created between 1842 and 1846 by the Innsbruck city architect Anton Mutschlechner (1785–1846). This was expanded and rebuilt in 1884-1886. It is one of the five houses of the Tyrolean State Museums.



The Tyrolean State Museum was founded in 1823 as an association with the purpose of "promotion and sustainable development of art, culture, science and research" in Tyrol. In 2007, the newly founded Tiroler Landesmuseen-Betriebsgesellschaft m.b.H. the operative business, which includes the Ferdinandeum and the Arsenal, the folk art museum, the Hofkirche, the Tyrol Panorama with the Kaiserjägermuseum and the Tyrolean folk song archive. Since then, the association, which has around 2700 members (2014), together with the state of Tyrol, has been a shareholder and owner of the seven collections of the Ferdinandeum and the museum building. The society is managed by Peter Assmann, who is also the director of the museum.



The idea of ​​establishing a "patriotic museum for Tyrol" goes back to Archduke Johann, who wanted to give his private collections to the University of Innsbruck for teaching purposes, which was thwarted by the separation of Tyrol in the Peace of Pressburg in 1805. From 1821, state governor Karl Graf Chotek followed the museum plans. On March 2, 1823, Emperor Franz I approved the founding of a national museum, and on May 13 the provisional constitutive general meeting of the museum association took place. Archduke Ferdinand took over the protectorate and agreed to the name "Ferdinandeum".

The collections were initially housed in rented rooms in Wilten Abbey and in the university building. In 1833 the museum holdings already included a library with 2,331 works and 600 documents, 280 oil paintings, 660 engravings and sculptural works, 1,300 copperplate engravings and 2,200 hand drawings, mostly by Tyrolean artists. The increasing lack of space led to the first plans for a new museum building in 1838. The governor's garden (small courtyard garden) was initially considered as the location. In 1842, the General Assembly decided to build the museum based on a design by Anton Mutschlechner in the previously undeveloped area of ​​Angerzell. It was one of the first buildings in the newly created street, today's Museumstrasse. Archduke Johann opened the new building on May 15, 1845.

In 1867 there were first considerations for an enlargement, which was finally realized with the help of donations and subsidies from the Innsbrucker Sparkasse, the city of Innsbruck, the state parliament and Emperor Franz Joseph from 1882. The plans for the one-story addition came from the city engineer, Natale Tommasi. The first celebration was celebrated in 1883, and in 1884 the conversion was largely completed. The vestibule was built in 1886/88. The initially unplastered facade was only completed in 1900. In 1909/10 the east wing was added according to plans by Eduard Klingler, and in 1927/28 the three-story west wing was added, which was expanded again in 1957/58.

After the separation of South Tyrol in 1919, Italy claimed parts of the collections. Since the Ferdinandeum was organized as a private association, this was prevented by the Treaty of Saint Germain. Only a few items on loan from South Tyrol and Trentino had to be handed in.

In 1939 the museum escaped nationalization. It continued to exist as a club museum, but now under the supervision and administration of the Gauleiter. In 1940, however, the administration and building were taken over by the Gau Tirol-Vorarlberg, and the collections remained with the museum association because of possible Italian claims. During the Second World War, the collections initially remained in the museum, but after the first bombing of German cities in 1942, plans were made to relocate them. The most valuable pieces first came to Ambras Castle and in 1944 to the abandoned Stams Abbey. Other collections were housed in Tratzberg Castle, Sigmundsried Castle, Schneeberg Castle, Lichtenwerth Castle, Friedberg Castle, Matzen Castle and Fügen Castle. The geological and zoological collections remained in the museum. During an air raid on April 10, 1945, the entire roof, all halls and cabinets on the second floor east of the dome, as well as parts of the first floor and the ground floor were destroyed. Reconstruction began in 1946 and was completed in 1949. In the course of 1946, all the stocks that had been removed were returned.

There had been considerations for a long time to accommodate the natural history collections in the armory. In 1959, the federal government, as the previous owner, handed it over to the state and then adapted it. In 1969 there was a large exhibition about Emperor Maximilian I. In 1973 it was finally opened as a regional museum.

On the occasion of the 175th anniversary in 1998, the Ferdinandeum was expanded and renovated. A new two-storey underground storage facility was built in the courtyard area, which was put into operation in 1999, and an extension building that connects the side wings on the courtyard side with a transverse wing and was completed in 2003. The old building has been renovated inside and out.

In September 2017, the collection and research center (SFZ) of the Tyrolean State Museums in Hall in Tirol was opened with a floor area of ​​14,000 square meters. Since then, this has served as a depot for collection objects and as a workplace for carpentry and restoration work.



The 1842-1845 and 1882-1884 increased storey building is a monumental building in the neo-Renaissance style with a flat central projection with a dome and a three-axis portal. The two sphinxes on the side of the vestibule are by the sculptor Franz Baumgartner (1903). The three-storey main wing encloses a rectangular courtyard with the transverse wings that were built later. The central part of the main wing protrudes in a semicircle towards the courtyard and is covered with a dome.

The facade has a strongly sculptural window structure, horizontal frieze and cornice bands and a balustrade cornice. A terracotta frieze with medallions with portrait heads of famous Tyrolean artists (Paul Dax, Gregor Löffler, Alessandro Vittoria, Alexander Colin, Martin Knoller, Joseph Schöpf, Angelika Kauffmann, Michelangelo Unterberger, Franz Zauner, Johann Baptist Lampi, Joseph Anton) runs between the first and second floors Koch and Dominikus Mahlknecht) created by Antonio Spagnoli. The corresponding medallions on the side facades remained empty. In 2011, a bust of Max Weiler created by Johannes Schlögl and Markus Jestl was placed on the east facade. The portrait heads of famous Tyrolean poets and scientists (Oswald von Wolkenstein, Girolamo Tartarotti, Joseph Resch, Johann Anton Scopoli, Peter Anich, Jakob Philipp Fallmerayer, Josef von Bergmann, Antonio Rosmini, Pius Zingerle and Hermann von Gilm).

The facade is crowned by a 3 meter high statue of Tyrolia, flanked by Minerva on the left and the Allegory of the Arts on the right. The sculptural group was designed by Joseph Gasser von Valhorn and executed by Antonio Spagnoli.

The listed building is a typical example of the representative architectural style of the second half of the 19th century and is considered one of the highest quality museum buildings in Austria outside of Vienna.



The Tiroler Landesmuseum Ferdinandeum comprises seven collections; In addition to the actual Ferdinandeum on Museumstrasse, there is also the Museum in the Arsenal (historical and technical collections on the cultural history of Tyrol) and the branch on Feldstrasse (scientific collections).

In terms of content, the Tyrolean State Museum offers above all:
in the prehistoric and provincial Roman collections: an overview of prehistory through Roman times to the early Middle Ages in Tyrol
in the older art history collections: art and handicrafts from the Romanesque period to the Gothic period up to the 19th century with a Dutch collection; by Michael Pacher, Lucas Cranach d. Ä., Rembrandt van Rijn, Joseph Anton Koch, Angelika Kauffmann, Franz Defregger
in the modern gallery: art of the 20th and 21st centuries with selected works by Albin Egger-Lienz, Max Weiler and contemporary Tyrolean artists, among others
in the Graphics Collection: drawings and prints from the 15th century to the present day, as well as contemporary photography
in the historical collections: an overview of Tyrol from the Middle Ages to the present, with focal points such as Andreas Hofer, Schwaz silver mining, cartography of Tyrol (Blasius Hueber, Peter Anich) and objects from everyday culture
in the music collections: valuable instruments, Jakob Stainer violins and precious historical keyboard and wind instruments and a listening room with examples of the rich Tyrolean musical creativity
in the library: a selected Tyrolean collection (including the Oswald von Wolkenstein manuscript c) or the rich private library of Andreas Alois Baron di Paulis von Treuheim

The scientific and humanities research activities of the house have been documented since 2008 in the scientific yearbook of the Tyrolean state museums. It continues the older publications of the Museumsverein:
Contributions to the history, statistics, natural history and art of Tyrol and Vorarlberg. Volumes 1 (1825) – 8 (1834)
New journal of the Ferdinandeum for Tyrol and Vorarlberg. Volumes 1 (1835) – 12 (1846)
Journal of the Ferdinandeum for Tyrol and Vorarlberg. Episode 3/1 (1853) – 3/60 (1920)
Publications of the Museum Ferdinandeum in Innsbruck. Volumes 1 (1922) - 87 (2007; most recently under the title: Publications of the Tyrolean State Museum Ferdinandeum)

The Historical Commission (technical committee for history) founded in 1907 and based in the Ferdinandeum is the leading publisher of the Tiroler Urkundenbuch, a text-critical edition of the oldest historical historical sources in the historic Tyrolean region.


Since the foundation of the museum association in 1823, a so-called custodian has managed the day-to-day operations of the museum. The growth of the collections necessitated the appointment of individual collection managers, who are also referred to as custodians. All business is managed by a director.

Essential custodians were
1824-1833: Joseph Heinrich von Glausen
1833-1837: Franz Karl Karpe
1837-1843: Alois Flir
1844-1850: Franz Wiedemann
1853-1884: Balthasar Hunold
1886-1912: Konrad Fischnaler
1912-1937: Kaspar Schwarz
1938-1955: Vincent Oberhammer
1955-1960: Erich Egg

board members / directors
1881-1887: Alphonse Huber
1887-1919: Franz von Wieser
1946-1965: Ernst Durig
1960–1985: Erich Egg (Director from 1960, President from 1965)
1985-2005: Gert Ammann
2007-2019: Wolfgang Meighorner
2019–: Peter Assmann