Herbert Boeckl (1894-1966)


Herbert Boeckl was born in 1894 in Klagenfurt (Carinthia). He was the second son of Leopold Böckl, a mechanical engineer, and his wife Paula. After his school education he moved to Vienna in 1912, where he applied at the Academy of Fine Arts. But he has been refused and so he began to study architecture at the Technical University in Vienna. As a private student of Adolf Loos he got in contact with artists like Egon Schiele, Gustav Klimt and Carl Moll. In 1913 his works were shown for the first time in an exhibition in the Art Salon Pisko of the Österreichischer Künstlerbund (Austrian Artists Association).


During the World War I Boeckl was at the italian front in the same regiment as Bruno Grimschitz, who was a friend and sponsor and the later director of the Österreichische Galerie Belvedere (Austrian Gallery). After the war he married Maria Plahna, who posed for him in the first years of their marriage. Boeckl finished the first state exam in 1918 but then broke up the apprenticeship at the Technical University and concentrated on painting. He opened up a small studio in Klagenfurt and took part in an exhibition of the Kunstverein Kärnten (Carinthian Artist Association) in the Künstlerhaus. Arranged through Egon Schiele, who saw one of his portraits, Boeckl received a contract with the Publisher and Art Dealer Gustav Nebehay. Thus he was economically independent until 1931 and was able to travel to Berlin, Paris and Sicilia. His family started to divide their life between Carinthia and Vienna.

The first big representation of his works took place in 1927 in the Viennese Secession, 30 oil paintings by Boeckl where shown in own room. After that he and his family mainly lived in Vienna and he worked in a studio in the Argentinierstraße 41. In 1935 Boeckl was appointed as a professor on the Academy of Fine Arts in Vienna, after 1938 he signed all of his works with Boeckl instead of Böckl. During the Second Worldwar he withdrew from the public life in Austria, gave up the leadership of the master class and then managed the daily evening class for nude drawing.


After the Second Worldwar Boeckl was the rector of the Academy of Fine Arts and was very involved in the personnel and economic reconstruction of the Academy and the artistic life in Austria.

In 1934 Herbert Boeckl received the Große Österreichische Staatspreis, 1960 the Klimt Honour of the Secession, in 1964 the Goldene Ehrenkreuz für Wissenschaft und Kunst der Republik Österreich (Golden Cross of Science and Art from the Republic of Austria) and the Ehrenring of the City Vienna. In 1964 was a Herbert Boeckl retrospective in the Museum of 20th Century Art.

Herbert Boeckl died after a stroke in 1966 and was buried at the Viennese Central Cemetary.






Widder Fine Arts


Johannesgasse 9-13
A-1010 Vienna

Tel/Fax: 0043-1-512 45 69
Mobil: 0043-676-629 81 21


Business hours:

Tue - Fri: 11:00 - 18:00
Sat: 10:00 - 15:00