At the end of July/beginning of August, I went to the Côte d’Azur with my family for a week. It was a trip that was preceded by organisational difficulties that mostly came from the fact that we didn’t all book together and at once and that it is very difficult to distinguish between Saturday and Sunday. Also, my family on trips will cause chaos, period.
In any case, one of my sisters, V, and her family flew in on Tuesday (which was planned), my parents flew in on Saturday (which was planned) and my other sister, A, her baby and me flew in on Sunday (which was not quite as planned). We flew to Nice and lived in Vence in two houses, one for V and family, the other for my parents, A, the baby and me.
France is not only the land of ugly postcards, it is mostly the land of sexist postcards. The amount of naked (female) butts that you can send from there is staggering. So when I found these babies on my last day, I knew I had to throw money at them.
Roma and Sinti have historically been an extremely underprivileged group in Austria, and that is putting it lightly. They were systematically persecuted, killed and generally abused – all of that for centuries rather than decades. That has been going on for so long that most of the people who identify as Roma, or Sinti, or one of the many other groups that are usually subsumed under the mantle of “Roma”, would rather that nobody knows of their background. So to see an exhibition that not only talks about the exotification, ostracization and annihilation of the Roma and Sinti in and around Austria, but also about their arts, culture and accomplishments, all curated by Roma and Sinti themselves, is a wonderful thing and I’d urge everybody, in particular Austrians, to see it.
Mira Lobe and Susi Weigel worked together for almost 50 years, creating children’s books that Lobe wrote and Weigel illustrated. Most of those books were extremely successful, many have been translated into many languages. The exhibition shows not only their work and lives, but puts it into a political context that is shaped by the fact that Lobe was Jewish and that both had strong socialist convictions.
I grew up on Mira Lobe and Susi Weigel books, but to see their work in the exhibition really showed me how productive they were – and how much of it I can still discover. I also appreciated the background info that made me look at their books in a new light.
Stanley Kubrick started his career as a photographer for Life Magazine before heading into film. He mostly took photos of people, doing entire portraits of more or less famous people, but also (more or less staged) snapshots on the street or in public transportation. The exhibition I saw tried to give an overview over his work as a photographer by showing the span of his photo essays which worked very well. We also had an interesting guided tour. Generally I think I like his photographic work better than his cinematic work, though already in his photographs he shows a keen eye for the right moment and for the (necessary) theatracality.
You can find some of my favorite images after the jump.
The exhibition starts with one of Helnwein’s earliest piece – an water color he submitted as an entrance exam for art school and moves through his career, though not completely chronologically.
The exhibition is really short – we were through in less than an hour. And while I wanted a drink several times while I walked through it, at no point did I hit the point of museum overload as I usually do during these exhibitions. So afterwards we walked through the rest of the Albertina, looking at Gunter Damisch’s work and the permanent exhibition. When we had finished that, our brains were sizzling, though.
In any case, it’s an excellent exhibition, giving you a great overview over his work – from his water colors to his photography to his hyperrealist paintings. Easy entertainment it is not. But it’s great.
In January, I went to Berlin again for a couple of days with my parents. Mainly to visit my sister and her family, but also to get away for a bit. Plus, we crammed culture in that trip like it’s nobody’s business.
Nude Men is a current exhibition at the Leopold museum. It shows paintings and a few sculptures, mostly from the 18th century onwards, all featuring naked men.
There has been quite some outrage when the exhibition opened in Vienna. Because the poster that advertised it actually showed *gasp* naked men! Not doing anything sexual, not even remotely pornographic, just standing there.
As every year, I went to the World Press Photo exhibition. This year, though, I didn’t go with deadra, but with B. and S. Nevertheless, you’ll get my favorites after the jump as usual.
I do think that there were more female photographers honored this year than in the previous years. I don’t have a statistic, but that’s my impression. If it’s true, it’s pretty damn cool and should be encouraged.
MELPOMENA – LINE IN Yourself 2012 was an event at the Fluc, a mix of live concerts, exhibition and party. First there was a concert from Serbian electro-punk band Ilegalne emocije, then Bosnian duo Basheskia & Edward EQ were playing and then there was a DJ. During all of that there was also a photo exhibition of Branimir Prijak‘s work, called “Monuments of the Revolution” where he photographed monuments all over the former Yugoslavia. [I didn’t know any of these artists before – I went there completely blind, actually not knowing exactly what I had signed up for at all. Adventure!]
I was actually not familiar with Sternfeld’s work before going to the exhibition. In fact, it was a complete coincidence that I ended up seeing it at all. The Albertina had a party event on their terrace that me and B. wanted to check out. The party was pretty goddamn awful, but surprisingly you could wander through the Sternfeld exhibition for free and that’s what we did. [Apparently that’s what happens when I try to party.]
Anyway, I quite liked the photos. He has some very nice landscapes (especially of The Meadows, Northhampton), but the two series I liked the most were photos of places where crimes had happened a while back, in which he showed the mundance places and describes the crimes comitted there and photos of former communes and utopian projects and what (little) remained of them today. It was really interesting.