In 1869 Makart was invited to move to Vienna, where his studio soon became a centre of Viennese society. He had a huge influence on the interior decoration and fashion of his time. His history paintings depicted contemporary scenes in historical costumes and are regarded as the major works of the Ringstrasse era. In 1879 he was appointed Professor of History Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts. One of the high points of his career came with the commission to design the festive pageant to mark the silver wedding anniversary of the imperial couple in 1879.