From The Art and Popular Culture Encyclopedia
"The place where Alfred Polgar frequented at this time was Café Central where he could be found in the company of Peter Altenberg, Anton Kuh, Adolf Loos and Egon Friedell. There he found plenty of material for his astute observations and analyzes."--Sholem Stein
Art and culture have a long tradition in Vienna, including theatre, opera, classical music and fine arts. There is a multitude of smaller theatres, in many cases devoted to less mainstream forms of performing arts, such as modern, experimental plays or cabaret.
Vienna is also home to a number of opera houses. Many concert venues offer concerts aimed at tourists, featuring popular highlights of Viennese music (particularly the works of Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart and Johann Strauss).
Many Roman Catholic churches in central Vienna also feature performances of religious or other music, including masses sung with classical music and organ.
The Sisi Museum (a museum devoted to Empress Elisabeth Amalie Eugenie of Austria) allows visitors to view the Imperial apartments as well as the silver cabinet. Directly opposite the Hofburg are the Kunsthistorisches Museum and the Naturhistorisches Museum, which houses many paintings by old masters and ancient and classical artefacts.
A number of museums are located in the Museumsquartier (museum quarter), the former Imperial Stalls which were converted into a museum complex in the 1990s. It houses the Museum of Modern Art (Ludwig Foundation), the Leopold Museum (focussing on works of the Viennese Secession, Viennese Modernism and Austrian Expressionism), additional halls with feature exhibitions and the Tanzquartier. The Liechtenstein Palace contains one of the world's largest private art collections. There are a multitude of other museums in Vienna, including the Military History Museum, the Technical Museum, the Vienna Clock Museum and the Burial Museum. The museums dedicated to Vienna's districts provide a retrospective of the respective districts.
A variety of architectural styles can be found in Vienna. Styles range from classicist buildings to modern architecture. Art Nouveau left many architectural traces in Vienna. The Secession, Karlsplatz Stadtbahn Station, and the Kirche am Steinhof by Otto Wagner rank among the best known examples of Art Nouveau in the world.
The city has enacted many social democratic policies. The Gemeindebauten are social housing assets that are well integrated into the city architecture outside the first or "inner" district. The low rents enable comfortable accommodation and good access to the city amenities. Many of the projects were built after the Second World War on vacant lots that were destroyed by bombing during the war. The city took particular pride in building them to a high standard.