1. Cultural policy system
Last update: July, 2016
The Princely Collections rank among the most outstanding private art collections in the world. For many years, anyone speaking of culture in the small country of Liechtenstein was referring to these treasures of European art, which span five centuries. Culture as experienced in everyday life by the inhabitants of this Catholic country, one that was still a poor agricultural society at the onset of the 20th century, was part of the Christian tradition. Religion constituted the foundation of culture.
Not until Liechtenstein's economy rapidly caught up with modernisation following the Second World War did a true cultural landscape begin to develop. Whereas the roots of the Princely Collections lie in the Baroque ideal encompassing princely patronage of the arts, today, representatives from the Liechtenstein private sector also promote art and culture in its entire scope. The state cultural policy had its inception in the 1960s and 1970s as a consequence of private initiatives. Today, the state plays a key role in supporting the rich cultural life on four levels: internationally within Europe, nationally in the Rhine Valley region, and within the country's eleven villages.
The year 2008 represents a new milestone in Liechtenstein's cultural policy. A modern law both reinforces and simplifies the state's cultural mandate. With the Liechtenstein Cultural Foundation, a central institution is now assuming responsibility for the advancement of private cultural activities. Culture at the onset of the 21st century is interpreted in a contemporary manner and includes folk culture, science, heritage, museums and exhibitions in addition to music, the fine arts, literature, architecture, theatre, dance and film. Furthermore, 2008 is the year of the second Cultural Congress – the first having taken place in 2000 – with the goal of continuing to stimulate cultural policy discussion and cultural development. In 2012, the Liechtenstein government decided to create a new, comprehensive Office of Cultural Affairs within the National Public Administration. This represents a further milestone on the government's path toward structuring cultural policy in a focused way.
The state provides funding for artists, cultural projects and cooperative activities, and also assumes the responsibility for public institutions - the Music School, the School of Fine Arts – both established through private initiatives – the National Library, the Kunstmuseum (Museum of Fine Arts) as the national gallery, and the National Museum. This oldest cultural facility owes it founding to the Historical Society, which, beginning with its establishment in 1901, extensively shaped the cultural development during the 20th century. The Society is also the initiator for maintaining cultural assets and championing historic preservation – the bridges connecting us to the past. In August 2012, the Ministry of Cultural Affairs has prepared a modern Law on the Protection of Cultural Assets. The new Law aims to provide a comprehensive basis for the protection of cultural goods in Liechtenstein.
The acknowledgment of culture's great impact on humanity and society as a whole shapes Liechtenstein's cultural policy. This is similarly reflected in the profile of the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein, which specifically targets topics dealing with the contemporary attitude towards life within Europe. This national gallery presents international works of art while at the same time, in its function as a regional museum, emphasising the cultural wealth of the Rhine Valley region.
In 2000, private donors presented the country with the Kunstmuseum. On display are works from the Collections of the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein as well as from the State Art Collections – established in 1967 – which, with their works of art from the 19th and 20th centuries, create a chronologic link to the Collections of the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein. Paintings by Ferdinand Nigg are included in the collection, the Liechtenstein pioneer and recluse, who produced his works in Germany, who joins other major names associated with the Classic Modern period.
In 2000, a spirit of cultural optimism reigned: Liechtenstein put cultural diversity on view at Expo 2000 in Hanover and participated in the Europe-wide project Literature Express Europe 2000. In the 1990s, cultural activities increased by leaps and bounds: The Symphony Orchestra, the Musical Company and the International Guitar Days were introduced. Professionals in fine arts, music, literature, theatre and dance redoubled their creative efforts and Liechtenstein books made their debut at the Frankfurt and Leipzig German-language book fairs. From 1964 to 2007, cultural promotion has been under the aegis of the Cultural Advisory Council, providing impetus for numerous cultural projects. It functioned in an advisory capacity to the government during the drafting of the Cultural Promotion Act of 1990, which ensures free artistic expression for every person in the country.
Since 1999, the Office of Cultural Affairs – which previously was directly affiliated with the government and will now become part of the new, comprehensive Office of Cultural Affairs within the National Public Administration – has coordinated the various governmental responsibilities relating to Liechtenstein cultural issues. It advises the Ministry of Cultural Affairs, implements projects and represents Liechtenstein in international and regional commissions. In its function as the operational centre for the country's regional and international engagement, it is active in the cultural commissions at the Council of Europe, EFTA / EEA and the International Lake Constance Conference (IBK). International cultural exchange, as well as public cultural policy, plays an ever-increasing role in Liechtenstein's foreign policy. In 2010, the government approved a concept for the country's future cultural foreign policy. Liechtenstein has taken the lead internationally with its new Corporate Governance Act for State Enterprises adopted in 2010. With this new law, the government steers and supervises state enterprises in a responsible and qualified manner, subject to oversight by Parliament. This guarantees that cultural institutions in the Principality of Liechtenstein are managed in a transparent and efficient way.
In Liechtenstein, as in other small countries, culture is considered a significant component of the national identity. In this spirit, "My Country" was the title of the 2010 Cultural Forum. In 2012, the Ministry of Cultural Affairs further established the Liechtenstein Cultural Forum project. With the economic boom after the Second World War, many different nationalities, cultures and religions were drawn to the small state of Liechtenstein. According to the Cultural Mission Statement of 2011, getting to know each other through cultural encounters is a key element of a tolerant approach to diversity. Under the motto "An avalanche is made up of crystals", the 2012 Cultural Forum drew attention to each individual's qualities and opportunities for action. In 2013, the Cultural Forum focused on the topic of building culture in Liechtenstein and the added value contributed to culture by architecture. With the "Young Culture Liechtenstein" promotional prize in the amount of CHF 10 000 (8 312 EUR), the state of Liechtenstein is also supporting innovative projects in professional arts and culture.
Two important historical events were at the centre of cultural life in 2012: First, the "300 Years of the Upper Country" celebrations commemorated the contract selling the County of Vaduz to Reigning Prince Johann Adam Andreas of Liechtenstein in 1712. The Prince had already bought the Domain of Schellenberg – today's "Lower Country" – from the Counts of Hohenems in 1699. His motives were not economic, but rather political: In 1396 in Prague, Roman-German King Wenceslaus IV granted Vaduz and Schellenberg imperial immediacy, a precondition for Liechtenstein's later sovereignty. The Principality of Liechtenstein was founded in 1719 and elevated to an imperial principality. Johann Adam Andreas is not only considered the founder of Liechtenstein, he also expanded the Princely Collections with one of its centrepieces, namely the world-renowned works of the Decius Mus Cycle by Peter Paul Rubens.
Secondly, the Liechtenstein National Museum commemorated the history of the postage stamp in the small state in 2012 with its exhibit "100 Years of Liechtenstein Stamps 1912-2012". The high artistic quality of the postage stamps attracts the interest of philatelists worldwide. The first Liechtenstein stamps appeared on 1 February 1912 and showed the portrait of Reigning Prince Johann II in three denominations. They were designed by Jugendstil artist Koloman Moser, one of the founders of the Vienna Secession in 1897. The first stamp series was based on the postal treaty between Liechtenstein and Austria. The conclusion of the postal treaty with Switzerland, which entered into force on 1 February 1921, was a significant turning point in the history of Liechtenstein postage stamps. After the First World War, when the Danube Monarchy collapsed, Liechtenstein turned toward Switzerland. With the postal treaty of 1921, Switzerland took over postal and telephone services in Liechtenstein, but allowed the country to issue its own stamps.
In 2013, Liechtenstein discovered its potential as a country for the cultural and creative industries. The Institute of Architecture and Planning at the University of Liechtenstein launched a research project on cultural and creative sciences. The researchers analysed the role of architectural design in the creative industry of Liechtenstein and the Alpine Rhine Valley. On the basis of this foundational knowledge, they are planning to develop a model strategy for sustainable urban and cultural development. At the 2013 Liechtenstein Cultural Forum, an exchange with experts in the fields of architecture and culture from Liechtenstein and its neighbouring countries took place under the title of "Cultural Space and Spatial Culture". The starting point of the project is the Liechtenstein Cultural Mission Statement of 2011, in which the Ministry of Culture of the Government of the Principality of Liechtenstein defines the goal of promoting the cultural and creative industries. The vision is by 2020 to develop into a country that is perceived internationally through its culture. In this way, Liechtenstein is following the plan of the European Union to invest more heavily in the cultural and creative sector. In September 2014, the University of Liechtenstein presented the first Creative Industry Report for the country on the basis of statistical data for the years 2005, 2008, and 2011. According to that report, the number of people employed in the creative industries is comparable to cities such as Vienna and Zurich. The report is considered an important step for making the huge creative potential of the country visible (see also chapter 3.5.1).
Main features of the current cultural policy model
The cultural activities in a small country are dependent on an exchange with the world beyond its own borders. Cultural foreign policy both regionally and internationally is a high priority in Liechtenstein. Culture is deemed to be a means toward integration and European dialogue. With their "cultural diplomacy", the diplomatic representatives contribute to Liechtenstein's international prestige. The government's mission statement regarding cultural goals formulated in 1995 and confirmed in 2000 is currently being refined and systemically implemented. Liechtenstein is reinforcing its engagement as indicated by its recent 2008 Cultural Promotion Act and the newly established Liechtenstein Cultural Foundation.
Culture being an integral part of the national identity, it is, at the same time, an expression of a sophisticated broad-mindedness. Cultural activities designed and enjoyed by the numerous elements comprising society are characterised by an extraordinary sense of diversity worthy of promotion. One standing goal is to cultivate cultural assets. Another is to enable every citizen to engage in discourse with the testimonies of his or her own culture as well as foreign cultures, to experience these testimonies not only as a segment of his or her own history but of human creative power as a whole. The state guarantees the requisite liberal framework, nurtures the cultural environment and actively complements private art and cultural promotion.
A key element in Liechtenstein's cultural policy is the principle of subsidiarity, which stimulates and encourages private initiative. Even the major cultural institutions such as the Music School, the theatre and various cultural societies owe their current existence to the initiative of small groups. The state becomes involved when cultural activities are facilitated through additional funding and personal engagement, primarily to render exhibits or constructions possible. Many actors and numerous forms of cooperation play their part in the national model. The country's eleven municipalities contribute to the promotion of culture through the principle of subsidiarity. Patrons and sponsors are one category of guarantor for the wide variety of cultural projects within the country. For instance, Liechtenstein's capital Vaduz has awarded the Josef Gabriel von Rheinberger Prize since 1976.
The Liechtenstein composer and music educator attained international standing in the second half of the 19th century. Since 2003, the International Josef Gabriel Rheinberger Society has promoted and disseminated his extensive work throughout Europe. On the occasion of the 175th birthday of the Late Romantic composer, a special exhibition in the Liechtenstein National Museum commemorated Rheinberger's extensive correspondence with musicians, composers, publishers, painters, and poets. Since 2014, the extensive Rheinberger music documentation – including first editions of musical scores – has been available in the Liechtenstein National Archives. This was a gift from the Harald Wanger family, in honour of the long-time collector and director of the Rheinberger Archive in Vaduz who died in 2011.
With its collections, the Princely House makes a special contribution to cultural life in Liechtenstein and especially also in Vienna. Businesses in the export and financial industry also dedicate funds to the promotion of culture. For instance, they build up collections and promote cultural projects in Liechtenstein and abroad. Since 2011, the Liechtenstein National Museum has been the home of the Adulf Peter Goop Private Collection, which includes a collection of more than 2 300 Easter eggs unlike any other in the world, such as numerous one-of-a-kind Russian masterpieces including from the world-famous Fabergé workshops in St. Petersburg and Moscow.
Cultural policy objectives
Liechtenstein's cultural policy targets the general public, artists, cultural institutions and projects. It involves more than just promoting culture, extending to advocating a public forum, ensuring advantageous general conditions and supporting the interests of artists. Cultural policy is closely related to other political areas: to foreign policy, financial policy, tourism, communication policy and educational policy. Cultural policy means more than merely administering and promoting cultural issues; it always impacts on society as a whole. The cultural and educational institutions, the houses of knowledge, learning and entertainment are prerequisites for society's existential needs.
In the face of the increasing convergence taking place in Europe, becoming acquainted with other cultures assumes a key role. It is clearly desirable not to eradicate our differences, but instead to look upon them with tolerance. Approximately 33.7% (as of 2013) of Liechtenstein's population are non-citizens. A cultivated involvement with each other results in a more receptive society, thus giving rise to a more broadly reinforced sense of self-esteem. Cultural policy also means improving the quality of human coexistence.
For more than ten years, the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein has deliberately sought out topics that deal with the contemporary attitude toward life in Europe. The government Ministry of Culture also supported the "Little Constellation" project in 2010, which was launched as a research project in San Marino in 2004 and serves as a platform for contemporary art in small European states and micro-areas. The platform's goal is to offer a different look at the current situation of modern societies. This is motivated by the demand for an expanded critical view of potential future developments.
In 2012, Liechtenstein decided to join Traduki, a European network for literature and books initiated cooperatively in 2008 by the Federal Ministry for European and International Affairs of the Republic of Austria, the Federal Foreign Office of the Federal Republic of Germany, the Swiss arts council Pro Helvetia, KulturKontakt Austria, the Goethe-Institut and the S. Fischer Foundation. The network promotes the translation of literature from, to and within South-eastern Europe.
Since 2013, Liechtenstein has made use of the worldwide network of libraries of the Goethe Institutes of the Federal Republic of Germany. These now also offer publications from Liechtenstein on the country's history and culture. The Goethe Institute promotes German language and culture and engages in international cultural cooperation.
The goals of Liechtenstein's cultural policy correspond to those of the Council of Europe, specifically to promote identity, creativity, diversity and access to cultural life.
Last update: July, 2016
Last update: July, 2016
The five members of the Liechtenstein government lead 15 government ministries. The Ministry of Education is responsible for the Liechtenstein Music School and the School of Fine Arts. The Ministry of Cultural Affairs is responsible for cultural policy and cultural advancement in Liechtenstein. It is also responsible for the autonomous foundations under public law, such as the Liechtenstein National Museum and the National Library, as well as for Adult Education. At the same time, the Ministry of Culture contributes to institutions under private law, fulfilling a purpose in the interest of the state, such as the Historical Society and the Theater am Kirchplatz. Assigned to the Ministry of Cultural Affairs are three Public Administration offices: the Cultural Heritage and Archaeology Division of the Office of Structural Engineering, the National Archives, and the Office of Cultural Affairs, created in 2012. The merge into the new Office of Cultural Affairs will not only upgrade the cultural sector in its visibility. This concentration also improves the transparency and the services offered. The Ministry of Culture receives this way the opportunity to concentrate more on management duties and its political mandate to form cultural policy.
The new Cultural Promotion Act has been in force since 1 January 2008, thereby investing the Cultural Foundation with the organisation and decision-making functions relating to cultural promotion. The government as the supervisory authority appoints the foundation board for four-year terms and approves the performance agreements. The Cultural Foundation is responsible for state support of private cultural projects, artists and private institutions. It is also responsible for its own projects, such as the English Building Art Space and representation at the Frankfurt Book Fair, at which the Liechtenstein author Armin Öhri received the European Union Prize for Literature in 2014. Cultural promotion for the country as a whole and for the individual municipalities is clearly compartmentalised. Liechtenstein's eleven communities organise their own cultural activities in accordance with the laws of the municipality. The municipalities chiefly support their own cultural societies and concern themselves with the overall appearance of the municipality and the preservation of historic buildings and monuments.
Last update: July, 2016
Please find the available information on this subject in 1.2.2.
Last update: July, 2016
Please find the available information on this subject in 1.2.2.
Last update: July, 2016
Information is currently not available.
Last update: July, 2016
Culture entails numerous cross-connections. Decisions in Liechtenstein are jointly reached by the five members of the collegial government. The Ministries of Cultural Affairs, Education, Foreign Affairs, Transport and Telecommunications work hand in hand in cultural areas. Thus, the Music School, for example, is assigned to the Ministry of Education, fulfilling an important function in the field of musical education; at the same time, however, it also plays a significant role in the active cultural life of the country.
Culture and the media are likewise engaged in an interactive relationship as illustrated by the coverage of cultural events formalised by the Media Promotion Act of November 1999. Given that public cultural work and cultural policy have an internal as well as external impact, foreign policy has recognised the priority of a cultural dialogue and awareness of cooperation beyond the country's borders since 1996.
Another economic sector exhibiting a close association with culture is tourism, which markets the "Liechtenstein brand" by way of art collections, architecture and events. The Minister of Cultural Affairs has chaired the Cultural Round Table since 1996, where representatives of the various cultural institutions meet regularly to exchange information and coordinate programmes. The Ministry of Cultural Affairs also regularly invites the chairpersons of the cultural commissions of the individual municipalities to exchange experiences.
Last update: July, 2016
The Cultural Promotion Act of 2008 summarises in one act the promotion of private cultural activities. The institutions formerly responsible for this cultural promotion, the Government Cultural Advisory Council and the Pro Liechtenstein Foundation, are now consolidated in one institution: the Liechtenstein Cultural Foundation.
Last update: July, 2016
Table 3: Cultural institutions financed by public authorities, by domain, in CHF, 2013
|Domain||Cultural institutions (subdomains)||Number (2013)||Trend (++ to --)|
|Cultural heritage||Cultural heritage sites (recognised)||2 695 086||--|
|Museums (organisations)||1 162 129||--|
|Archives (of public authorities)||1 166 673||++|
|Visual arts||public art galleries / exhibition halls||3 593 000||--|
|Art academies (or universities)|
|Performing arts||Symphonic orchestras|
|Music schools||6 324 360||--|
Music / theatre academies |
|Dramatic theatre||2 375 000|
|Music theatres, opera houses|
|Dance and ballet companies|
|Books and Libraries||Libraries||1 670 000||--|
|Interdisciplinary||Socio-cultural centres / cultural houses|
|Other (please explain)||5 736 642||--|
More information is currently not available.
Last update: July, 2016
One central institution is the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein. The acknowledgement of culture's great impact on the deeply lying strata of humanity and society as a whole shapes the position and profile of the Liechtenstein national gallery. The gallery specifically targets topics dealing with the contemporary attitude towards life within Europe. The regional museum also emphasises the cultural wealth of the Rhine Valley region including Eastern Switzerland, the Austrian province of Vorarlberg and the Principality of Liechtenstein.
The Kunstmuseum – opened in the year 2000 – also displays works from the Collections of the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein as well as from the State Art Collection – established in 1967 – which, with their works of art from the 19th and 20th centuries, create a chronologic link to the Collections of the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein. The Liechtenstein State Art Collection Foundation was incorporated into the Liechtenstein Kunstmuseum Foundation in 2000. The complete works of the thirteen Arte Povera artists are considered a matchless contribution on the part of the Kunstmuseum.
A plaque listing the names of donors demonstrates the origin of the Kunstmuseum. A group of financially strong patrons of the arts – industrialists, banks, trustees and the national capital of Vaduz – joined forces to build the museum and to donate the land to Liechtenstein. The façade of the monolithic edifice cast seamlessly in black basalt stone and fine-grained Rhine gravel is considered a milestone in concrete art. The architectural clarity lends an urban character to the centre of Vaduz.
The Kunstmuseum exhibitions reflect an international quality: for instance, programmatically with the works of the great representative of abstract art, Otto Freundlich; or thematically, such as when two generations of artists representing the 1960s and the 1990s address the phenomenon of migration. Sometimes the emphasis is on prominent artists such as The Late Work of Andy Warhol; or with a focus on conceptual art and Jochen Gerz's "Inverted Time"; or 100 modern masterpieces by Paul Klee; or contemporary works such as Fabian Marcaccio's "From Altered Paintings to Paintants".
From October to December 2013, the Batliner Collection was exhibited at the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein under the title: "From Monet to Picasso. The Batliner Collection – Albertina Vienna". The collection covers a period ranging from important works of Impressionism and Fauvism to German Expressionism and Bauhaus and the Russian avant-garde, from Pablo Picasso to selected works from the latter half of the 20th century. With around 500 works of classical modernism and contemporary art, it is regarded as one of the largest and most important private collections in Europe. The collection was transferred on permanent loan to the Albertina in Vienna in 2007. This collection rounds off a series of exhibitions organised by the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein dedicated to private collections housed in Liechtenstein, with the museum giving visitors an overview of the Hilti Art Foundation in 2005, the collection of Veronika and Peter Monauni in 2009, and most recently the collection of the non-profit Mezzanin Foundation for Art in 2011.
The facility housing collective memory in Liechtenstein is the Liechtenstein National Museum. Well-secured in air-conditioned storage facilities, the invaluable originals were locked away for 11 years. In 1992, the original museum building in Vaduz showed evidence of structural damage. In November 2003 it was reopened in its renovated and expanded state: eras and themes conjoin in a unique architectural complex consisting of three buildings: the 500-year-old former National Museum edifice, the 400-year-old Governor's House and a newly constructed building at the foot of the Castle Mountain. Six leitmotifs on six floors introduce the various aspects of human life. Visitors from the country and the region encounter the roots of their own lives. Since May 2011, the National Museum has offered tours and workshops for children and young people. For this purpose, the Board of Trustees has approved a museum educator position for three years.
The National Museum in Vaduz presents a thematically arranged permanent exhibit featuring the history and culture of the Principality of Liechtenstein as well as rotating exhibits. Branches of the National Museum include the Postal Museum in Vaduz and the Museum of Rural Living House Nr. 12 in the municipality of Schellenberg.
The collections of the Liechtenstein National Museum contain objects from both Liechtenstein and regional history including archaeological artefacts from the Neolithic period to the early Middle Ages, models and reliefs, articles of daily use and examples of materials and furnishings from every epoch, weapons and military objects, Late Gothic rooms, ecclesiastical carvings, a 1612 Lenten cloth, ecclesiastical gold work, coins, medals and military decorations, farming and alpine tools, objects representing the areas of handicrafts, industry, technology, schooling, traditions, farmhouse rooms, graphic arts, cartography and Tibetica (Heinrich Harrer Collection). Since 2003, the National Museum has displayed, in addition to its own natural historical and cultural objects, exhibits from the Natural History Collection of the Principality of Liechtenstein (originally the Collection of Prince Hans von Liechtenstein) regionally focussing on the ornithology, botany, flora and fauna in the Alpine region. Since June 2010, the National Museum has owned the Adulf Peter Goop Collection. This includes a unique collection of more than 2 000 Easter eggs from various cultures, most notably the famous and precious Fabergé eggs by the Russian jeweller Peter Carl Fabergé.
"Anschluss or preservation of sovereignty? – Liechtenstein in 1938" is the title of a special exhibition in the Liechtenstein National Museum from September 2013 to January 2014. It deals with Liechtenstein's situation after the annexation of Austria to Nazi Germany on 12/13 March 1938. In the following days and weeks, important steps were taken to preserve Liechtenstein's sovereignty. The Progressive Citizens' Party (FBP) and the Patriotic Union (VU) pledged their allegiance to the Constitution, independence, the Princely House, and the Customs Union with Switzerland. In July 1938, Franz Josef II became Reigning Prince. He took up residence in Liechtenstein and in this way confirmed the will of the Princely House to preserve sovereignty.
For several years, the motto C/O/U/R/A/G/E has been displayed in capital letters on the foyer wall at the Theater am Kirchplatz (TAK) in Schaan. The small theatre's aim is to provide a place for developing the courage to be unique, audacious and non-conformist. The theatre strives to encourage its visitors to assert their role as contemporaries in spite of all uncertainty, to support individual thought and feelings. The TAK is a regional theatre attracting international plays and concerts to the country while also presenting its own productions as well as co-productions. It is organised as a cooperative and receives state promotional funding in addition to private support and monetary provisions from the municipalities of Schaan and Vaduz. In addition to plays, concerts, readings and discussions, the TaK also organises children's and young people's theatre. In 2011, TaK was the main organiser of the MorgenLand Festival under the patronage of the Liechtenstein government. The festival's goal was to bring civic engagement together with society, politics, economics, and culture.
With over 2 750 students, the Liechtenstein Music School is the largest educational institution in Liechtenstein. It is open to all age groups, is actively involved in the cultural life of the region and promotes musical diversity, through organising 200 annual events. Auditions, teachers' concerts, scenic performances, large musical comedies and concerts in every musical style enhance Liechtenstein's cultural calendar throughout the year. Annual highlights include the musical competition "Making Music in Liechtenstein" as well as the Teachers' Concert and International Master Courses. The Music School helps musicians to prepare themselves for admission to an institute of higher education. In 2013, the Music School celebrated 50 years of existence as the nucleus of Liechtenstein's musical life. Ten years before, the Liechtenstein Parliament set out a financing key in the Music School Act: 50% State, 25% municipalities, 25% school fees. In 1994, the Jazz-Rock-Pop division was founded.
The list of Master Course instructors that come to Liechtenstein each year reads like a who's who of the music world. Since their founding in 1970, the International Master Courses have evolved into a high-quality international seminar and event platform in Liechtenstein. Every summer, world-famous musical greats expertly instruct 100 to 120 young professional musicians from various countries in a range of subjects. The traditional teachers' and participants' concerts are a permanent feature of the summer cultural offerings in Liechtenstein. More than 3 000 musicians from 48 countries have participated so far.
The Liechtenstein School of Fine Arts was established in 1993 as a complementary educational option for children, young people and adults. Since 2002, it has been an independent foundation under public law. The aim of the School of Fine Arts is to provide a productive, contemporary educational facility advocating an open and independent understanding of art and design. Its goal is to promote by all possible means the creative talents and abilities of its students and to encourage them to develop their own unique personalities. The School of Fine Arts promotes creativity in children and adults through imaginative painting, drawing, photography and the new media. In accordance with international directives, it prepares students for admission to a professional art academy.
In comparison to other national libraries, the history of the Liechtenstein National Library is short, beginning as it does shortly after the Second World War in a time of economic upswing and a reinforced (self-) awareness of sovereignty. The idea of a central facility for collecting and documenting materials written in and about the country led to the 1961 establishment of the Liechtenstein National Library as a foundation under public law. As a result of the 1998 renovation, the library acquired a modern infrastructure.
As a national library, its legal mandate is to collect every written document, either printed or published, either generated by Liechtenstein citizens or written about Liechtenstein and its neighbouring region. The same applies for pictorial or sound documents (CDs of choirs, bands...). In its function as a scientific library, it provides the necessary professional literature for study or professional purposes and acquires or arranges the sharing of information from foreign libraries. In its function as a public library, it offers a comprehensive range of books, videos, DVDs, etc. for entertainment or continuing education purposes.
The National Library provides media for every age group representing every field of knowledge and for learning and entertainment purposes. The inventory consists of nearly 220 000 media materials (at the end of 2004): books, periodicals, newspapers, VHS and DVD videos, audio cassettes, CDs, records, CD-ROMs and DVD-ROMS, microfiches and microfilms. Only slightly less than half of these materials are located within the library building; the remainder is housed in an external facility due to shortage of space. Approximately 5 500 new media materials are added each year.
The Liechtenstein Kunstmuseum, a museum of contemporary art in Vaduz, regularly presents exhibits featuring works from the private collections of the Reigning Prince of Liechtenstein, thus creating a link with the world of the Old Masters. Cooperation with the Liechtenstein Museum in Vienna has existed since 2000, when the Kunstmuseum was opened.
Since 2000, the "Long Night at the Museum" has been held annually and simultaneously in Austria, South Tyrol and Liechtenstein. The Austrian Broadcasting Corporation Radio and Television (ORF) organises the event. All participating museums welcome visitors from 6 p.m. to 1 a.m. on the same day. Within certain areas, shuttles provide transportation to several of the participating museums.
In 2006, the Kunstmuseum St.Gallen, the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein and the Frankfurt Museum for Modern Art (MMK) acquired the historically significant Ricke Collection, thus striking a new, innovative path towards cross-border cooperation between museums. Although the collection legally belongs to all three facilities, the collection has been preserved as a whole and the partners have equal access to the entire inventory. The Ricke Collection is a unique art collection of great artistic quality. It is primarily comprised of American art since the 1960s. Because it illustrates an incomparable concentration of work groups that optimally complement each other, the collection is unparalleled worldwide.
Businesses in the export and financial industry also dedicate funds to the promotion of culture. For instance, the Martin Hilti Family Trust is building up an extraordinary collection from the Classic Modern period to the present. At the same time, the Hilti Foundation is sponsoring the Simon Bolivar Youth Orchestra in Venezuela by providing 3 million USD for instruments. Since 1996, the Foundation has also promoted the work of underwater archaeologist Franck Goddio. His excavations in the harbour of Alexandria, Egypt, and in Abu Qir Bay have divulged spectacular finds and new historical insights. The "Egypt's Sunken Treasures" exhibit has travelled around the world. The treasures have been shown in Berlin, Paris, Bonn, Madrid, Turin, Yokohama and Philadelphia and will be on exhibit in four other US cities in 2011. The Fritz Kaiser Foundation also makes one of the most important collections of Chinese contemporary art in the world accessible to a broad public. Wealth manager Fritz Kaiser has built up the collection over more than two decades and has put "The Museum of Chinese Contemporary Art" on the Internet under 88MoCCA.
Last update: July, 2016
The Ministries of Education and Cultural Affairs are responsible for cultural issues in cooperation with the Council of Europe, the EEA, the EU and the region. In addition to its cooperation with the UN, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs is responsible for cultural events at the embassies located in Bern, Vienna, Berlin, Strasbourg, Brussels, Washington and New York. The International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights also includes the right to education and participation in cultural life. As a member of the United Nations since 1990, Liechtenstein has made a noteworthy commitment especially to human rights issues. For instance, Liechtenstein has played a leading role in the establishment and strengthening of the International Criminal Court (ICC). Starting in March 2015, the small state will be a member of the UN Commission on the Status of Women (CSW) for four years. The CSW is the most important intergovernmental UN body on women's issues and gender equality, composed of 45 members. Liechtenstein is especially interested in advocating for the protection of women in armed conflicts.
As a member of the Council of Europe since 1978, Liechtenstein takes part in European cultural projects. The Council of Europe's cultural goals – promotion of diversity, identity, creativity – are mirrored in Liechtenstein's cultural policy. Liechtenstein has ratified the European Cultural Convention and the European Conventions for the Protection of Architectural and Archaeological Heritage. Liechtenstein has also concluded an agreement with the Russian Federation regarding cooperation on cultural issues. Due to this close connection between culture and foreign policy, various cultural projects have evolved in recent years, such as with Iceland and Croatia.
The exchange with the neighbouring countries in the Lake Constance area has been particularly active. In 1998, Liechtenstein joined the International Lake Constance Conference after having previously contributed as a guest to the cultural commission and having participated in projects. Liechtenstein is a member of the Conference of Cultural Officers of the Cantons of Eastern Switzerland and the Principality of Liechtenstein. From 2009 to 2012, the Conference promoted regional, professional dance culture with the "DancePlan East" project. Additionally, bilateral meetings with various Swiss cantons and with the Austrian province of Vorarlberg take place annually. In 2011, artists from Liechtenstein took part in the 11th Lake Constance Conference artist meeting, IMPROfessional. For the first time, more than 30 artists from the Lake Constance region met for a cross-genre improvisation experiment. Every two years, the International Lake Constance Conference initiates encounters of artists in rotating domains of the arts. The purpose is to promote artistic dialogue across borders in the Lake Constance region.
In 2012, the state of Liechtenstein hosted the Cultural Forum of the International Lake Constance Conference under the heading of "The Added Value of Culture", which brought together distinguished researchers and artists at the University of Liechtenstein in Vaduz. Furthermore, a special exhibit in the Old Rectory in Balzers, the southernmost municipality of Liechtenstein, called for a discussion of the topic of "Swabian children". Far more children of poor farming families from Liechtenstein moved to Upper Swabia than was previously assumed, in order to hire themselves out to Swabian farmers as herd boys and maids. The suddenly renewed interest in "Swabian children" is thanks to an international EU research and exhibition project. Together with partners from Southern Germany, Vorarlberg, Graubünden, Tyrol and the Principality of Liechtenstein, a closer look was taken at the history of the Swabian children. The cooperative project was supported by the Interreg IV programme of the EU entitled "Alpine Rhine – Lake Constance – High Rhine".
The International Lake Constance Conference is a grouping of the states and cantons of Baden-Württemberg, Schaffhausen, Zurich, Thurgau, St. Gallen, Appenzell Ausserrhoden and Innerrhoden, the Principality of Liechtenstein, Vorarlberg, and Bavaria, which adjoin Lake Constance or are connected with it. The goal of the International Lake Constance Conference is to preserve and promote the region as an attractive living, natural, cultural, and economic environment and to strengthen regional identity. In 2014, the International Lake Constance Conference for the first time nominated 17 projects for the IBK Sustainability Prize, including the Liechtenstein project entitled "The Workshop of the Future", which brings people together who want to make a contribution to a sustainable future society.
In 1999, Liechtenstein outlined strategies for a targeted promotion of international and regional cultural exchange. One goal is to afford artists the opportunity to introduce themselves and their work and to compete abroad as well. The other goal is to have culture shape Liechtenstein's image abroad. In addition, invitations extended to foreign artists enrich the Liechtenstein cultural scene. Regardless of the extension of its support, Liechtenstein nonetheless respects the guaranty of autonomy and freedom of artistic expression.
Last update: July, 2016
Depending on the topic, either the Ministry of Foreign Affairs or the Ministry of Cultural Affairs represents the country in international organisations such as the Council of Europe, the EEA and the EU. In 2008, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has intensified dialogue with UNESCO. On the initiative of the UNESCO Director-General, Liechtenstein has been invited to participate in UNESCO activities. Liechtenstein is a state party to the May 1954 Hague Convention for the Protection of Cultural Property in the Event of Armed Conflict. Liechtenstein's government policy does not foresee a membership in UNESCO at the present time, however.
As a member of the EEA, Liechtenstein has had access since 1996 to EU programmes and thus to the Kaleidoscope, Ariane, Raphael (1997-1999), and Culture 2000 (2000-2006) development programmes, and in the third development period to the Culture Programme 2007 – 2013, the aim of which was to create a platform for cross-border cultural cooperation. Liechtenstein artists are also able to participate in the EU Interreg and Euregio programmes. Nevertheless, Liechtenstein participation has as so far proven to be modest.
Last update: July, 2016
In 2007, the Frankfurt Museum of Modern Art, the Kunstmuseum St. Gallen (St. Gallen Museum of Fine Arts) and the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein (Liechtenstein Museum of Fine Arts) jointly purchased the Rolf Ricke collection comprised of 152 works by American Classicists for 4.5 million EUR. This example of cooperation has thus far remained matchless in the realm of German-language area cultural activities. The state funded half of the Kunstmuseum's share of the purchase price. Furthermore, Liechtenstein established a Cultural Property Immunity Act, thus aligning itself with the German-language area standard governing international cross-border loans of works of art.