Urban Practice in the Arrival District

Sketch by Daniela Brasil, 2016

House of Open Gates, Sketch by Daniela Brasil, 2016

It was in September 2015 when the so called refugee crises reached Graz. After Hungary decided to close the borders, the people on the move had to change the route and therefore  entered Austria at the border station Spielfeld, 45 km south of Graz. Like many other NGOs, <rotor> tried to take part in solidarity actions. But what can be the role of and art centre in such an unpredictable situation when thousands of refugees pass the city every day? It was the beginning of a learning process and the start for new forms of (artistic) communication and cultural work. A year later the “House of Open Gates” was realized as part of the festival steirischer herbst with many newcomers in town taking part in conception, building and various activities.

2020 five years have passed. In the course of the seminar “Art and the Social” we will explore the Annenviertel area as a “classical” arrival district since centuries. Get in touch with social and cultural institutions acting in the district, meeting people with arrival narrations from different times and backgrounds. 

The group will be introduced into the preparations of the public art project “VIERTELPALAST & Schools of We” located on five spots in the Annenviertel neighbourhood. And get familiar with the artistic practices of Aleksandra Czerniawska (Warsaw), mini pogon (Belgrade), Nikolay Oleynikov (St.Petersburg, Lecce), Eliana Otta (Vienna, Athens), studio ASYNCHROME (Graz). 

The course offers insight in a vibrant cultural production and requires hands on!