Ralph Gleis, the director of Berlin’s Alte Nationalgalerie, has been named as the successor to Klaus Albrecht Schröder as general director of Vienna’s Albertina from 1 January 2025, the Austrian culture ministry said in a statement.
Gleis was selected from 20 candidates, having “convinced the finding committee with his competence, experience, aura of professionality and enthusiasm for the Albertina,” Andrea Mayer, the Austrian culture minister, said in the statement. “In my view the Albertina will be in the best hands, even after the impressive Schröder era.”
Schröder will have led the Albertina for 25 years by the time he steps down at the end of 2024. His successes have included securing the Essl Collection, comprising 1,323 works, for the museum in 2018.
Born in 1973 in Münster, Germany, Gleis has led the Alte Nationalgalerie since 2017. Exhibitions he has curated there include a recently opened exhibition on the Secessions in Berlin, Munich and Vienna with works by Gustav Klimt and Max Liebermann; shows of Paul Gauguin and Liebermann last year; a big exhibition of Belgian symbolism in 2020, and a show called Wanderlust with works by Caspar David Friedrich and Auguste Renoir in 2018.
His previous career included eight years working as a curator at the Wien Museum in Vienna and a year as a researcher at the Deutsches Historisches Museum in Berlin. He studied art history in Münster, Bologna and Cologne, where he completed a doctorate on 19th-century historical painting in 2008.