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Come as You Are. Kunsthalle Wien Prize 2023

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Kunsthalle Wien Karlsplatz
Treitlstraße 2
1040 Vienna

Opening of the Exhibition with works of the winners of the Kunsthalle Wien 2023 Award. A cooperation of the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and the University of Applied Arts Vienna with Kunsthalle Wien.

Welcome by What, How & for Whom / WHW (Artistic Directors Kunsthalle Wien)
Statements by Johan F. Hartle, rector of the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna, and Eva Maria Stadler, professor at the University of Applied Arts Vienna
An introduction by the curator Astrid Peterle, the artists will be present

During the evening, Željka Aleksić and Jusun Lee will present performances.

Free admission.

In cooperation with the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna and the University of Applied Arts Vienna

The ninth edition of the Kunsthalle Wien Prize, titled Come as You Are, is both an invitation and an instruction, a possibility and a restriction, a promise and a challenge.

The works by Željka Aleksić, Mila Balzhieva, Luisa Berghammer, Daniel Fonatti, Valentin Hämmerle, Jusun Lee, Michael Reindel, Marielena Stark, Anne Schmidt, and Marc Truckenbrodt show the polyphony of artistic perspectives and forms – for the first time, graduates from the departments of Art and Image | Graphics, Stage Design and the interdisciplinary Art & Science program are among the award winners.

For his performance Unshackling, Jusun Lee uses beads and bells to produce an improvised sound. While the artist purposefully moves his body, the sound emanating from these objects remain beyond his control. Tied to the performer’s body, these objects symbolize both oppression and the potential for liberation through sound, evoking a profound interplay of restraint and freedom.

Željka Aleksić’s performance GLEDAJ MAJKU, BIRAJ ĆERKU-KORENJE [Look at the mother, choose the daughter] focuses on the artist’s connection to her mother as something both biological and professional; having previously worked together as colleagues in a delicatessen. The performance – originally created for her exhibition I KNOW I CARE (Waschhalle Wienerberg, 2019) – entails a daily physical therapy exercise prescribed to Aleksić’s mother to treat Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, from which the artist also suffers. The painful condition is exacerbated by exposure to constantly changing temperatures – hot to cold and vice versa – which is a requirement of working in a store selling dairy products.

For the piece presented at Kunsthalle Wien, the artist has developed upon this original idea to also include her grandmother, who received a similar diagnosis. Three blood-related women of different ages carry out tasks typically performed by women from Serbia, the country where Aleksić was born and raised. Through the performance, the artist highlights the challenging conditions workers can encounter, while also emphasizing that three generations of women with the same diagnosis are not only connected biologically but also through their experience as workers.

The Kunsthalle Wien Prize 2023 is realized with the kind and generous support of Steirer Mika & Comp.