In 1967, the State of Liechtenstein received a gift of ten paintings which resulted in the foundation of the State Art Collection of Liechtenstein the following year. The first curator of the collection was Dr. Georg Malin, a Liechtenstein artist, historian and art historian. He soon expanded the collection to include international modern and contemporary art.
The building of the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein how it presents itself today was realized with the support of a group of private donors. Together with the government of Liechtenstein and the City of Vaduz, they planned and implemented the construction of the museum.
In August 2000, the building was officially donated to the Principality of Liechtenstein as a millennium gift. The government established a public foundation to operate the museum. The Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein was formally opened on 12 November 2000.
Mr. Friedemann Malsch has been the director of the Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein since 1996.
The Kunstmuseum Liechtenstein was built by the Swiss architects Meinrad Morger and Heinrich Degelo, along with Christian Kerez. Together they have created a museum building of great structural complexity and discreet simplicity. The closed form is a "black box" of tinted concrete and black basalt stone. River pebbles embedded in the building's exterior provide a subtle coloration, forming a link to the landscape of the Rhine Valley. The hand-carved surface of the facade invites touching, and reflects the surroundings. Long rows of windows open the black cube to both inside and outside.