Main entrance to 1048 Fifth Avenue. Architects: Carrère & Hastings, 1912–1914.

This archive article was originally published in the 9th Anniversary issue of Antiques & Fine Art magazine.


In 1994, businessman, philanthropist, and art collector Ronald S. Lauder and his longtime friend, art dealer and museum exhibition organizer Serge Sabarsky (1925–2008), purchased a Beaux-Arts mansion on New York City’s Museum Mile with the intention of converting it into a museum for German and Austrian art. Neue Galerie New York opened its doors in 2001 and quickly became one of the city’s most treasured small museums. The museum occupies all six stories of its distinguished home, once the residence of Mrs. Cornelius Vanderbilt III and a designated New York landmark. Visitors queue up outside its doors on weekends not only to view the world-class collection of art and decorative objects, but also to sample delectable food at the museum’s Viennese-style restaurant, Café Sabarsky. The restaurant shares the ground floor with the Design Shop, offering jewelry and other high-end gifts inspired by decorative objects in the collection, and the excellent Book Store, which specializes in works on fine art, architecture, and decorative arts from Germany and Austria.

Austrian art occupies the museum’s second floor, with an emphasis on the works of Gustav Klimt (1862–1918), Oskar Kokoschka (1886–1980), and Egon Schiele (1890–1918)—the gallery holds more than two hundred works by Expressionist artist and Klimt-protégé Schiele in its collection. In 2006, Lauder purchased Klimt’s dazzling 1907 portrait of Adèle Bloch-Bauer, reportedly for $135 million, the highest sum ever paid for a painting at that time. An opportunity to view the portrait is alone worth the price of admission. Decorative objects on display include works of the Wiener Werkstätte by Josef Hoffmann (1870–1956), Kolomon Moser (1868–1918), and Dagobert Peche (1887–1923). Additionally, there are examples of furniture designed by Viennese architects Adolf Loos (1870–1933) and Otto Wagner (1841–1918).

Gustav Klimt (1862–1918)
Adele Bloch-Bauer I, 1907
Oil, silver, and gold on canvas
Neue Galerie New York
This acquisition made available in part through the generosity of the heirs of the estates of Ferdinand and Adele Bloch-Bauer
Max Beckmann (1884–1950)
Self-Portrait with Horn, 1938
Oil on canvas
Neue Galerie New York and Private Collection
Josef Hoffmann (1870–1956)
Tobacco case for Otto Primavesi, Vienna, 1912
Execution: Wiener Werkstätte
Gold; lapis lazuli, pearl, turquoise, coral, opal, cornelian, and other semiprecious stones
Private collection
Courtesy Neue Galerie New York
Egon Schiele (1890–1918)
Town among Greenery (The Old City III), 1917
Oil on canvas
Neue Galerie New York
In memory of Otto and Marguerite Manley, given as a bequest from the estate of Marguerite Manley
Grand staircase of the Neue Galerie New York.
Photo credit: Andre Maier.
Josef Hoffmann (1870–1956)
Execution: Wiener Werkstätte
Five pieces from the “Flat Model” flatware service, consisting of crab fork, sardine server, pastry serving spoon, cheese knife, and butter knife, Silver, Vienna, ca. 1904–1908
Private Collection

An elegant central staircase leads to the third floor where, when not being used for a special exhibition, the museum’s collection of early twentieth-century German art is displayed. The period’s signature movements and their pioneering artists are well represented. Notable among them are Blaue Reiter works by Vasily Kandinsky (1866–1944) and Paul Klee (1879–1940); Brücke works by Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938); and Neue Sachlichkeit works by Otto Dix (1891–1969) and George Grosz (1893–1959). Decorative arts by important Werkbund and Bauhaus designers are also on display.

Neue Galerie New York is located at 1048 Fifth Avenue, New York City. For more information call 212.628.6200 or visit

All images courtesy of Neue Galerie New York.

Egon Schiele (1890–1918)
Self-Portrait in Brown Coat, 1910
Watercolor, gouache, and black crayon on paper
Private collection, New York
Ernst Ludwig Kirchner (1880–1938)
Standing Girl, Caryatide, 1909–1910
Carved and painted wood
Neue Galerie New York and private collection, New York


This article was originally published in the 9th Anniversary issue of Antiques & Fine Art magazine.