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Vienna, Parliament, Athena sculpture 01

The Austrian Parliament Building (German: Parlament or Hohes Haus, formerly the Reichsratsgebäude) in Vienna is where the two Houses of the Parliament of Austria conduct their sittings.

 

The main construction lasted from 1874 to 1883. The architect responsible for the building in a Greek revival style was Theophil Edvard Hansen. He designed the building holistically, each element harmonizing with the others and was therefore also responsible for the interior decoration, such as statues, paintings, furniture, chandeliers, and numerous other elements. Hansen was ennobled by Emperor Franz Joseph with the title of a Freiherr (Baron) after completion. One of the building's most famous features is the later added Athena fountain in front of the main entrance, which is a notable Viennese tourist attraction. Following heavy damage and destruction during the Second World War, most of the interior has been restored to its original splendour.

 

The Athena Fountain (Pallas-Athene-Brunnen) in front of the Parliament was erected between 1893 and 1902 by Carl Kundmann, Josef Tautenhayn, and Hugo Haerdlt, based on the plans by Baron von Hansen. In the middle is a water-basin and a richly decorated base. The four lying figures at the foot of Athena are allegorical representations of the four most important rivers of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. They represent at the front the Danube and Inn, in the back part the Elbe and Vltava (German: Moldau) rivers. On the sides are little cupids riding dolphins. The statues of the Danube, Inn, and the cupids were executed by Haerdtl, those of the Elbe and Moldau by Kundmann. The female statues above represent the legislative and executive powers of the state, executed by Tautenhayn. They are again dominated by the Goddess of Wisdom, Athena standing on a pillar. Athena is dressed in armor with a gilded helmet, her left hand carries a spear, her right carries Nike.

 

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Austrian_Parliament_Building

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Taken in May 2011