Preview 2021



We can look back on a year of unforeseen challenges when many things had to be postponed or cancelled at short notice.
We often asked ourselves the questions: What we could even plan for 2021? What exhibitions could take place? What sort of supporting programme could we offer?
But we then confidently set about planning a programme for the fortress – and you can find a little foretaste below.



The exhibition season opens with a project by FABRIK AZZURRO. Art spaces are shown in mobile containers, dealing with changes of perspective in different ways, changing the viewing angles in time and space.

WaterLightFestival Brixen Bressanone

This year, for the first time, the Franzensfeste Fortress will be illuminated as part of the WaterLightFestival. The Finnish light artist Kari Kola will bathe the fortress in a blue light and Vincenzo Marsiglia will illuminate the inner courtyards and the buildings directly near the water reservoir.

Cutting oneself off or tapping into one’s potential?
7 May 2021

The Franzensfeste Fortress will organise a round table in light of the Political Education Days 2021 and its slogan “Democracy – who runs the world?” Experts and affected parties will take a stance and explain the psychological, socio-pedagogical as well as legislative framework we’re experiencing right now.

International Day of Light
16 May 2021

Artist Petra Polli has devised a project for the International Day of Light focusing on change and the ensuing transformation. The Water Light Festival Brixen Bressanone had to be cancelled yet again this year, and so, the artistic installations are a way for the Organising Committee to send a sign of life to the world. From 13 May until 30 May.

International Museum Day
16 May 2021

International Museum Day is celebrated around the world in May. The proclaimed motto for the 2021 edition is: "Museums: Inspiring the Future". At the Franzensfeste Fortress there will be special offers throughout the day.

The Long Night of the Churches
28 May 2021

The Franzensfeste Fortress boasts a large, inner courtyard, home to its chapel. It is one of the first Neogothic buildings south of the Alps. It was built in 1844 and some historical sources even go as far as describing it as being able to withstand bombs. The Long Night of the Churches is open to everyone who wants to find out more about the chapel in the fortress.

50x50x50 everything for everyone
5 June – 3 October 2020

The 2021 exhibition, “50x50x50 everything for everyone”, forms part of the themed museum year entitled “Transit – Transport – Mobility” organised by the Euroregion of Tyrol-South Tyrol-Trentino, in which the Franzensfeste Fortress will also be participating. Artists from the three separate regions of Tyrol, South Tyrol and Trentino will use their works to transform the fortress into a unique experience space.

31 July 2 September 2021 

In light of International Migrants Day on 18 December 2020, the Coordination Centre for Integration, together with local high-schoolers, organised the “COOPERATION & RESONANCE” project. Pupils from Merano, Ortisei, and Bolzano documented the working day of young people with a migratory background by means of pictures, drawings, and texts. Their work is at the heart of a travelling exhibition which will be open to the public during summer 2021 during the Franzensfeste Fortress’ 50x50x50 everything for everyone art biennale.

Family Sunday
19 September 2021

One day before World Children's Day, children are also the focus of attention at the Franzensfeste Fortress. On our annual Family Sunday, we invite all children and their families to spend an exciting day with a great supporting programme in the fortress.

New permanent exhibition: Bunkered.
South Tyrol as a pawn in a wider story of arms and defence works
Autumn 2021

A new permanent exhibition in the Franzensfeste Fortress aims to uncover the powder keg on which we all sat thanks to the “Alpenwall” bunker system in World War II, as well as later following its partial reactivation during the Cold War. It brings the bunkers and their occupants to life and tells of the later civilian uses for these structures. Opens autumn 2021.

Art in Advent
26 November – 30 December 2021

The second lockdown has caused the cancellation of 2020’s “Art in Advent” exhibition. The twelve selected works will be shown from the end of November until the end of December 2021. In the form of artistic interventions, the pre-Christmas season moves into the Fortress Franzensfeste for the third time and transforms the inner courtyards into places of pause and reflection.