Neue Galerie

Neue Galerie

The Neue Galerie (which means ‘new gallery’ in German) is devoted to the preservation and display of twentieth century Austrian and Germany art and design. The museum was the joint dream of two men – the art dealer and exhibition organizer, Serge Sabarsky, and his friend, the collector and philanthropist, Ronald S. Lauder. While the two always wished to open a museum dedicated to the Germanic art that they loved so much, it wasn’t until 2001 – and after Mr. Sabarsky ’s death (1996) – that Mr. Lauder established the museum in honor of his friend’s memory.

The mission of the Neue Galerie is to celebrate the city in which it is located – New York – and also to bring the spirit and innovation found in twentieth century German art to the people of the city. The Neue Galerie is greatly influenced by various organizations in German and Austrian history, such as the original 1923 Neue Galerie in Vienna. The museum follows a Provenance Policy – meaning that it conducts exhaustive research into the ownership history of the items in its collections to ensure that they were not illegally claimed by the Nazi regime.

The Building

Located on New York City’s famous Museum Mile (on Fifth Avenue), the Neue Galerie was designed by the architectural firm, Carrere and Hastings (also designers of the New York Library). The building was completed in 1914, and had several important people and organizations making this their address, including the great society woman, the wife of Cornelius Vanderbilt III, as well as the YIVO Institute for Jewish Research. When Serge Sabarsky and Ronald S. Lauder started searching for a location for their dream museum in 1994, the pair snapped up the building. It was restored to its original state by the architect Annabelle Selldorf and has been designated a landmark by the New York Landmarks Commission.

The Collection

A wide range of media is found at the Neue Galerie, including sculpture, decorative arts, painting and photographs. The common denominator between all the works is the fact that they were created in Germany or Austria between the years 1890 to 1940.

The Neue Galerie features two exhibition floors dedicated to German and Austrian art and design. On the second floor, visitors can view Venetian art from around 1900, focusing on the special relationship between the fine arts and decorative arts. Examples of works by Egon Schiele, Oskar Kokoschka, Alfred Kubin, Josef Hoffman, and the architects Adolf Loos and Otto Wagner can be found on this floor.

The third floor features displays of art from various movements in twentieth century German art, including the Brucke, the Bauhaus, the Werkbun applied arts and the Blaue Reiter. Works by artists of this period, including Vasily Kandinsky, Erich Heckel, Lyonel Feininger and Marianne Brandt, are all featured on this floor.

A painting of particular interest displayed in the museum is the famous painting of Adele Bloch-Bauer I by Gustav Klimt. The painting was purchased by Mr. Lauder, on behalf of the museum, for an unconfirmed $135-million – clearly the most expensive painting ever sold.


The Neue Galerie boasts a rich cultural program for members and the general public. Visitors can enjoy lectures on a wide range of interesting subjects relating to German art. Recitals, shows, cabarets and films are also available. Visitors are advised to check regularly with the museum regarding upcoming events and monthly schedules.


No visit to the Neue Galerie would be complete without a meal at the famous Saborsky Café, named for the museum's co-founder. Authentic Austrian delicacies are offered to diners, under the watchful eye of the famous chef and restaurant owner, Kurt Gutenbrunner. Visitors can try from the range of delicious food, such as fine patisseries, amongst the atmosphere of grandness and splendor created by period pieces and artwork scattered throughout the restaurant. A grand piano standing in the corner wraps us the classic Austrian experience and recalls the nostalgia of yesteryear.


Visitors can choose from two different shopping experiences at the Neue Galerie. The Book Store offers books with a special focus on German literature, fine art and architecture. It also sells posters, catalogs and calendars. The Design Shop, which has been described by a 2006 Zagat Survey as a museum in itself, is the perfect place to obtain specialized items, such as objects based on original designs by famous German artists. Here buyers can find exclusive items influenced by Marianne Brandt and Adolph Loos, for example. This store is open the same hours as the museum.

Visiting the Museum

  • The Neue Galerie is open on Saturday, Sunday, Monday, Thursday and Friday. It is closed Tuesday and Wednesday.
  • Opening hours are 11.00 am until 6 pm. on open days
  • The museum is situated at 1048 Fifth Avenue at 86 th Street on the Upper East Side of New York.
  • The museum is easily accessed by public transport (bus and train). Commercial parking for private vehicles can be found across the road from the museum.
  • The museum is not open to children under 12 and teens between 12 and 16 years of age need to be accompanied by an adult.
  • The Neue Galerie is accessible by wheelchair on all three of its levels. Wheelchairs can be loaned on arrival. In addition, acousticguide audio tours are free with admission.

Visiting Neue Galerie NYC

The Neue Galerie is sometimes considered a welcome (albeit more compact) alternative to the touristier Guggenheim art museum, not too far from its location. Perhaps somewhat under appreciated by local New Yorkers, the Neue Galerie is a actually a spectacular institution, reminiscent of old world money and style and clearly succeeding in the passionate mission of its two founders to celebrate the exquisite German and Austrian art that come out of the early 20 th Century. Visitors are rewarded with images and designs from that time period in bright colors, stark lines and reflections of reality in a wonderful collection of works that are lovingly preserved and displayed in this museum.

Location: at 1048 Fifth Avenue, at 86th Street, in an area known as Museum Mile, New York.
Phone: 212-628-6200

Click here to visit Neue Galerie official website