Pictures at an Exhibition

Music * Art * Visual Theatre

In Karin Schäfer‘s „Pictures of an Exhibition“ every scene and „picture“ she creates is a homage to one of the great definitive artists of the 20th Century, resulting in an œuvre that transcends different artistic genres.

Bydlo - the Oxcart

The Hut of Baba Yaga

The Language of Silence

Works from

  1. Alberto Giacometti

  2. Niki de Saint Phalle

  3. Friedensreich Hundertwasser

  4. David Hockney

  5. Wassily Kandinsky

  6. Marc Chagall

  7. Andy Warhol

  8. Pablo Picasso

  9. Paul Klee

  10. Georgia O’Keefe

  11. Joan Miro

  12. Martin Kippenberger

  13. Christo und Jeanne Claude 

provide the inspiration for each one of the „living pictures“ in Karin Schäfer’s project



In June 1874 Modest Mussorgsky wrote the piano suite „Pictures at an Exhibition“, the inspiration for which came from an exhibition of the drawings and stage set sketches by his late friend Viktor Hartmann. In this work, which represents a kind of musical stroll through the exhibition, Mussorgsky conveys the feelings and sentiments the pictures awoke within him.

Many of the melodies in the suite, like „Promenade“, „Unhatched Chicken“ or  „Bydlo“, the Russian ox-cart, are now well-known across the world and have been the subject of many different arrangements, but nearly all of Hartmann’s original pictures have been lost and only live on in Mussorgsky’s music.

Karin Schäfer reverses this creative process in her production „Pictures at an Exhibition“. Because it is from the music, from its tonal colours and from the stories the separate pieces of music tell, that she creates the „pictures“. These images are new and completely different to the original ones, and in their own way very special, because they are brought to life by the music and then tell their own new stories.


„Pictures at an Exhibition“ is live performed on the concert grand by one of the most promising pianists of the younger european generation,  Christopher Hinterhuber.

It is also possible to perform with other pianists with only a short rehearsal. In October 2010 the show was presented with the greek pianist George Lazaridis at the Kilkis Festival.

In March 2010 the new Orchestra Version was presented together with the Izmir State Symphony Orchestra.

In June 2010 it was presented in Austria together with the Youth Symphony Orchestra Dornbirn at the Feldkirch Festival.

In 2013 it was performed at the Opera House in Bonn together with the Beethoven Orchestra and in 2014 with the Orqesta Sinfónica de Castilla y Leon in Spain.

„A multi-layered synopsis of the main artistic movements of this century, performed in a fascinating interaction of music, art and visual theatre“

Pictures at an Exhibition was developed in collaboration with Jeunesse Österreich and to date has been performed in:

Vienna, Concert Hall (Konzerthaus)

Luxembourg, Philharmonie

Salzburg, Museum of Modern Art

Madrid, Festival Teatralia

Klagenfurt, Konzerthaus

Eisenstadt, ORF TV Studio

Long Night of Museums

St. Johann, Kaisersaal

Klagenfurt, Konzerthaus

Graz, Minoritensaal

Innsbruck, Canisianum

Gmunden, Stadttheater

Dornbirn, Spielboden

Wels, Stadtheater

Zwettl, Stadtsaal

Eisenstadt, Kulturzentrum

Izmir, Konzerthaus, together with Izmir State Symphony Orchestra

Feldkirch, Feldkirch Festival, together with Youth Symphony Orchestra Dornbirn

Dornbirn, Kulturhaus, together with Collegium Instrumentale Orchestra

Bonn, Opera, with the Beethoven Orchester conducted by Domingo Hindoyan

Beethoven Orchester Bonn

Valladolid, Spain, with the Orquesta Sinfónica de Castilla y Leon

Modest Mussorgsky

Masterpieces from Picasso to Christo turned to life

by Mussorgskys singular music

recommended and sponsored by:

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Last update: 20. Juli 2017 | für den Inhalt verantwortlich: Peter Hauptmann | impressum & disclaimer