As an extraordinary treasure trove of visual knowledge, the Albertina had also been gathering photographs since the middle of the 19th century. Yet this was a fact that became common knowledge again only once the Photographic Collection was properly reconstituted in 1999.

The Collection is complemented by the historic stocks of the Langewiesche Verlag publishing house and the Austrian Federal Education and Research Institute for Graphics in Vienna, which contain not only pictures but also all kinds of apparatus and a substantial library. It presents the rare opportunity of researching, within continuous, media-transcending traditions, comparisons and contrasts offered by the so very multifarious phenomenon of the photographic image.