One of our trips to Burgenland brings us to the castle Deutschkreutz. This is a renaissance castle in a small village near the Austro-Hungarian border. However, it is not a castle that immediately attracts attention because it has extensive parks around it. Even its size does not help attract attention, as it is also hidden on the outskirts of Deutschkreutz. Only a small sign in the village indicates its existence. When approaching the castle, we are in doubt as to whether we are on the right track. Because this leads us into a forest and soon looks more like a path than a road. Nevertheless, we continue to follow it, and in the end we are finally in front of a driveway overgrown with wild greenery, which leads into the spacious castle courtyard. Two-storey arcade paths line the inner courtyard of the castle, which is overgrown with grass and in which some shrubs and shrubs bring some variety.
A castle for the arts
We are on the way with Elena von Creative Lena, Anna of wine shop post and Andreas from Travel by Photography. In the castle we are welcomed by the daughter of the castle owner, Professor Anton Lehmden, who bought this castle 1966. Since then he lovingly restored it. Professor Lehmden is a painter and famous for his paintings, in which he dealt primarily with landscape painting in the early days of his creative work. Later, in his pictures, he also portrays the incorruptibility of the human being, who does not learn from his mistakes, but always continues as chaotically as before. Together with his daughter he revives the Renaissance castle, which 1625 was built by Count Paul Nàdàsdy. On the one hand with his painting, which he exhibits in a wing of the castle, on the other hand with summer academies, in which he helps creatively interested participants. He also organizes art and music events that have a different theme every year.
Schloss Deutschkreutz is being restored
However, we climb up to the first floor of the castle, where Professor Lehmden takes time for us. He tells us how difficult it is to restore an old building like this one. On the one hand, it is an arduous task he has set himself. On the other hand, it consumes vast amounts of capital. But at least in the part he shows us, he has done so well. We enter a hall with marble floors and marble walls, in which only a few furniture stand. A table with several chairs and not much else. But this is just the stucco work on the wall and ceiling to the better advantage. Rosettes, fruit trees and garlands decorate the vaulted ceilings and give an impression of how splendid the castle looked during the days of the Nàdàsdys. Below hang paintings and tapestries by Anton Lehmden on the walls. Here, history and modern art are wonderfully combined.
Stucco, antiques and art
The next room of the castle looks similar, except that the ceiling is reinforced with dark wooden beams. "I discovered this in a Vienna demolition house," laughs Professor Lehmden and draws our attention to a chest of drawers in dark wood. Here, too, there are only a few pieces of furniture, while large-scale paintings by Lehmden adorn the walls. The studio where these works are created is right next door, and we also see sketches and designs of new paintings.
A home for the life's work of Professor Lehmden
An entire wing of the castle is dedicated to the life work of Anton Lehmden. Here we follow on our tour of his artistic development. This began with landscape paintings that look quickly behind the surface. His landscapes are broken up, cut open and look at what's underneath. On the other hand, his later works, in which he deals with themes such as war and the human inability to learn from past mistakes, seem almost frightening. Instead, the look through the open door into the courtyard of the castle with its arcades and the fresh green of the lawn seems almost conciliatory.
The castle chapel
At the end of our tour, we stand on the gallery of the castle chapel, which also had Lehmden renovated. Here, too, the room is mainly characterized by its sparse nature. In any case, the gothic arched windows let a lot of light into the church space, which contains only a few ornaments at eye level of the visitors on the ground floor. As a result, the stucco decorations of the vaulted ceiling and the ceiling paintings are all the more intense. Another eye-catcher is the stained glass windows designed by Anton Lehmden in the pointed arches of the windows.
However, what impresses us most about Schloss Deutschkreutz is the dedication with which both Professor Lehmden and his daughter dedicate themselves to the task of bringing this historic building back to life. A life task, as they both willingly admit. There is a lot of love in this house. History, creativity and art. A wonderful combination, as we find.
Year-round tours by prior arrangement at the DEUTSCHKREUTZ tourist office
Tel. + 43 (0) 2613 20 200
Current bargains are also available at booking.com
Source: own research on site at the invitation of Burgenland Tourismus. Our opinion, however, remains our own.
Text: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline
Photos: © Copyright Monika Fuchs, TravelWorldOnline