The walk, which also takes visitors through some of the city’s most visit-worthy squares, is museum quality. Big names in contemporary sculpture are represented, all free of charge, all to be seen at your leisure. The goal of the Salzburg Art Project is to create a leading sculpture park for residents and visitors, by selecting one new artist each year. It was certainly off to a strong start when they began in 2002 by revealing “A.E.I.O.U.” from German artist Anselm Kiefer and it’s only gotten better from there.
True to form, Italian artist Mario Merz presents a Fibonacci sequence inspired work. Just a few minutes away on the Mönchsberg is James Turell’s “Sky-Space”, a walk-in work where visitors can sit and look to the skies through the sculpture’s aperture. The light in the piece changes to highlight the natural beauty of the overhead sun and cloud formations. The work is exceptional at dawn and twilight. On the other side of the river is an interactive piece from leading sculptor and performance artist Marina Abramovic. If you haven’t seen any of her performances, YouTube them now.
Others highlights include British artist Anthony Cragg, the controversial German painter and sculptor Markus Lüpertz, as well as Christian Boltanski, whose much anticipate piece at the 2011 Venice Biennale already has a buzz, and the latest to be added, the site specific “Awilda” from Spanish artist Jaume Plensa.
The sculpture walk is a great way to see the city, with plenty of time to take coffee and Mozartkugel breaks along the way.
Where can you pick up a map? Pop by the Arthotel Blaue Gans on Salzburg’s main walking street Getreidegasse. No strangers to art and contemporary design, ask about the Arthotel’s impressive collection, and book a few nights to see it for yourself.
For more on all things art and Austria go natural with Salzkammergut and multi-laked beauty, peek into Vienna's contemporary art bastion the Old Bread Factory and check out the Josef Frank Suite by Svenkst Tenn, at Vienna's culture kid Hotel Altstadt.