Wheel of time
For over a century now the Giant Ferris Wheel has been turning high above Vienna, offering a spectacular view of the city on the Danube. The wheel has become an unmistakeable symbol of the city, visible from far away for locals and visitors alike. Now another wheel turns at its feet: The Wheel of History – illustrated through the Panorama exhibition.
This exhibition revives age-old Prater traditions through the help of ingenious artistic and technical audio-visual installations in eight cabins. This is not a museum, but a stage, a stage of history. The exhibition takes on two thousand years of the city’s history and stories about the Prater.
Wheel of time
ROMAN AGEThe Roman military camp Vindobona appears. Marcus Aurelius travels the countryside in a horse-drawn carriage. He used to rule here when the meadows around the Prater were still an untamed river landscape.
MIDDLE AGESThe Prater as a connecting element of the landscape, the medieval city and the construction of St. Stephen's Cathedral. The inner city starts to take on the form it would retain for centuries to come when the Prater still lay far beyond the city gates.
TURKISH WARSThe Prater as the scene of military conflict, Vienna in the 17th century, the cavalry of Polish king Jan Sobieski. The scene shows the attack of the Polish cavalry launched from the Kahlenberg.
AGE OF ENLIGHTENMENTIn 1766 Joseph II opens the Prater to the public, the imperial hunting grounds become a huge entertainment park – a European attraction to the present day.
BIEDERMEIERThe Prater as the kingdom of the ordinary people, dance and music lead the way into the first half of the 19th century. Vienna is not spared the political conflicts raging throughout Europe.
WORLD EXHIBITION and VENICE IN VIENNAThe illusionary scenery "Venice in Vienna" was constructed at the entrance of the Prater as part of the world exhibition. Of the many attractions the Giant Ferris Wheel is the only one to have survived the passage of time.
TURN OF THE CENTURYThe Prater as a literary setting, the first car races take place in the main alley. Vienna at the turn of the century, a truly cosmopolitan city with the Prater being both a place of loud enjoyment and discreet adventures.
From the ROARING TWENTIES to the DISASTER of the WORLD WARThe perfect world of the Prater on the brink of destruction. But the certainty remains that nothing can destroy the Prater’s liveliness or legacy. And so the Giant Ferris Wheel keeps going round and round ….