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Accessibility Day "Screen Reader – Positions on Accessibility"

Event Label
Accessibility Day
Organisational Units
Location Address (1)
Schillerplatz 3
Location ZIP and/or City (1)
1010 Vienna
Location Room (1)
University Library (Reading room, M7)

Organised by the University Library and the Student Welcome Center the Accessibility Day aims to raise awareness of the multidimensional topic of accessibility with a varied programme for many target groups.

Self-determined lifestyles and equal participation in society of people with disabilities in art, culture and science require equally the removal of physical and spatial barriers, as well as access to virtual spaces; a digital inclusion, which addresses barrier-free access to text, images and acoustic phenomena. 

The event will be held in German, sign language interpretation will be provided. No registration is necessary and selective participation in individual programme points is welcome.

9:30 a.m. Braille Center und Braille Library
Presentation | Beate Hattinger, Kerstin Wrba

The services offered by the specialist department of the Federal Institute for the Blind Vienna, such as the library and print shop, as well as the Braille Centre's consulting service on barrier-free design of websites and texts are presented. The library, for example, contains 8,000 works in Braille, and the print shop produces Braille products such as magazines, business cards, tactile plans and inclusive art books.

11:00 a.m. 7 Days at Schillerplatz
Exhibition | Philipp Muerling

In his performance series ‘Besuch am Schillerplatz‘ (Visit at Schillerplatz), which has received much media attention, the artist and Academy student Philipp Muerling refuses to enter the university through the back entrance. He does not want to be dependent on people where it would not be necessary. He wants to enter via the main entrance, at eye level and with equal rights.

For 7 days, Philipp Muerling has thrown himself in front of the doors of the Academy.
7 times Philipp Muerling has given himself over to hope, that art makes a change.
7 videos have emerged from this so far,
7 drawings in which Philipp Muerling processes this hope are presented in the exhibition.

With this action, the artist drew attention to a socio-political problem at the beginning of October – a problem that not only affects the grand staircase on Schillerplatz. He addresses that those who are not affected are hardly aware of, and calls for more inclusion and more awareness.

11:30 a.m. Center for Integrated Studies, University of Graz: Counselling and services for students with disabilities: Experiences and perspectives for the future
Talk, Workshop | Barbara Levc

This contribution gives an overview of the development of services for students with disabilities or health impairments at universities and higher education institutions in Austria and highlights current discussions – e.g. separate service units for students with disabilities versus integration into general diversity management. Participants are invited to contribute their own experiences, ideas and perspectives and to jointly develop models for future counselling and support services.

2:00 p.m. Inclusion and Accessibility in Virtual Reality and interactive Media
Talk, Discussion | Manuel Bonell, Flavia Mazzanti

The contribution aims to discuss the potential of VR and interactive media for inclusion and accessibility. By bringing up different examples from social media and face filters, to avatars in video games, and performances in the digital, as well as our own work and research, we want to open up a discussion on the possibility and problematics of VR and digital media to go beyond representation and become a mediator between the person’s identity and expression. On the other hand we will focus on the potential and challenges of these technologies in providing accessible experiences for everybody.

3:30 p.m. Flesh on Wheels
Intervention with Movement | Vera Rosner

The performance starts in front of the main entrance of the Academy at Schillerplatz at 3.30 p.m. The group moves together to the library on going/wheeling to the side entrance: This is the route that students and people in wheelchairs would have to take. Some people use a wheel chair. In the library, an intervention with movement “Dance out of Line” and a talk will follow, that will enable the exchange of experiences and ideas as well as discussion and questions.

5:00 p.m. Land of Silence and Darkness
Film screening | Documentary directed by Werner Herzog (Germany, 1971)

How can one find one's way in the world when neither sight nor hearing are available? In his documentary, Werner Herzog portrays several people with this severe, double handicap, in particular 56-year-old Fini Straubinger, who first went blind after an accident and then slowly became deaf as well. However, she can still speak and remains in contact with her surroundings by means of the ,Lorm hand alphabet’. To Herzog she says: “When you let go of my hand, it's as if we were a thousand miles apart." (Filmportal)


Beate Hattinger, born blind in Vienna in 1970, studied Romance languages and literature at the University of Vienna and is head of the Braille Centre at the Federal Institute for the Blind Vienna. Her professional activities include the preparation of texts in formats accessible to blind people, such as Braille, audio media, visually accessible electronic formats.

Kerstin Wrba, born in Lower Austria in 1986 and later blind at the age of 14. She attended the Federal Institute for the Blind Vienna for 4 years, where she learned Braille and then trained as a telephone operator. Since 2010, she has been a librarian at the BBI, where she is particularly responsible for Braille printing.

Philipp Muerling, born in Lower Austria in 1988, studies Contextual Painting at the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna.
Solo exhibitions: (2022) Besuch am Schillerplatz, Performance-Reihe; Parallel Vienna Artist Statement; Kunst am Bau; Zeichnen ist Politisch (2021) Gegenbauer am Naschmarkt (2018) Galerie Ausstellungsraum; Universitätsbibliothek; Jan Arnold Gallery, MQ (2017) Don't Touch the Artwork!, Mariahilfer Straße, Performance; Zeitgalerie, Dresden (2016) Reindorfgasse 9
Group Exhibitions: (2022) give me a higher love, Lehargasse, Studio Exhibition (2021) bAu 2-6 
(2020) Studio Exhibition; Me, myself and I, Christine König Galerie; Futur 3, Kiel
; fwp Kunstakt (2019) Studio Exhibition; Leopold Museum, Publication
; Young Urban Performances Festival, Osnabrück (2018) Living Studio, frei_raum, MQ
; Rizzuto Gallery, YICCA Art Prize, 1st Place (2017) Studio Exhibition; fluc, Auction (2016) Studio Exhibition
 (2015) Akademie der bildenden Künste Wien, Participation

Barbara Levc studied Educational Studies and has been a Disability Officer since 1994, and from 2004 she has been the head of the Center for Integrated Studies at the University of Graz. Since 2017, she has also been a lecturer at the University of Teacher Education Styria and head of the Competence Centre for Inclusive Studies there. The focal points of her work are counselling and services for students with disabilities and health impairments as well as the accessible design of the university environment and the teaching and learning conditions. Her teaching focuses on diversity and inclusion, intersectionality and self-determined living for people with disabilities.

Flavia Mazzanti (28) and Manuel Bonell (30) are two Vienna-based media artists, architects and entrepreneurs in the field of virtual reality and digital media. They are co-founders of Immerea, an interactive media company focusing on the development of VR games and interactive installations, co-organizers of XRVienna, and external lecturers at the University of Vienna. They both graduated with distinction from the Academy of Fine Arts Vienna. Their works explore post-anthropocentric theories, digital inclusion, and new ways of perception and interaction in virtual and hybrid spaces.

Vera Rosner, born and based in Vienna, works with dance, choreography, performance and interdisciplinary concepts. She teaches different formats in Austria and on international level (Porto, Helsinki, Munich, Oslo, Berlin, London…); and she organizes Jattle, BAM + Poetry and SINNING WHEEL, Dance Labs and artistic intervention in public space. From 2005 to 2009, she danced at Danse Brute. In 2008, she founded the group A.D.A.M. As performer she was on the stage in Gala by Jerôme Bel and in Habitat and Everybody Electric by Doris Uhlich.