OUR WORLD: October Art Picks

The international art autumn is in full swing. Festivals and biennales are popping up in Tcheck Republic, Poland, Austria and many other places, many of which address the ongoing war in Ukraine. viennacontemporary presents the Top 5 Insider Picks of inspiring exhibitions and collaborations currently on show with focus on Central and Eastern Europe, and beyond.

In its second edition, the Prague Biennale, which takes place in the Prague City Gallery, the General University Hospital, and the Šaloun Studio in Prague, explores the topic of vulnerability, fragility, violence and trauma and concentrates on artists from Central and Eastern Europe. Profit from the last days of this free biennale in the capital of the Czech Republic!

This year’s festival centers in beautiful Graz around the motto of the war in Ukraine as well around a large exhibition in collaboration with Neue Galerie Graz. steirischer herbst is revisiting its collection to tell a very subjective story about wars and their roots in a series of encounters between artworks from the 19th and 20th centuries and contemporary works. Many of the historical works have long since not been shown or are exhibited for the first time, while among the new works there are numerous commissions, made in dialogue with the collection. A performative program as well as a film screening accompanies and broadens the themes of the exhibition.

Photographer, performer, sculptor, and installation artist Sanja Iveković is known as one of the first feminist artists of Croatia. Since the 1970s, her artistic practice has continuously confronted issues of gender and politics. Works of Heart (1974–2022) at Kunsthalle Wien brings together works that span the artist’s prolific career and looks into neglected histories of antifascism and socialism through the prism of her personal history, and it addresses one of the key concerns of her work—the relationship of history to contemporaneity. While a retrospective in nature, the exhibition works in the here and now: it has a performative power that strives for gender equality, anti-fascism, emancipation of collective memory, and solidarity.

ArtVilnius’22 will feature 70 art galleries and institutions and 320 artists from 18 countries. The theme of the fair, which is being held for the thirteenth time this year, is ecology, with a special focus on the genres of installation and sculpture. The guest of the fair is Ukraine, whose artists’ works will be presented in various segments of the program.

The artspace Coalmine in Winterthur, Zurich, presents a group exhibition of video works surrounding the topic of war. Curated by Olexii Kuchanskyi And Oleksiy Radynski in cooperation with Annette Amberg, the exhibition shows, among others, video works of Mariupol’s film scene, which was very active before the city’s destruction (by Zoya Laktionova, Sashko Protyah, and others), an anti-war video about women’s war experiences and traumas (by Dana Kavelina), a video work with found footage of mine workers in Donbass and a new work about the current bombings (both by Andriy Rachynsky & Daniil Revkovsky). 

Artists: Dana Kavelina, Oksana Kazmina, Myro Klochko & Anatoliy Tatarenko, Roman Himey & Yarema Malaschuk, Lisa Hoffman, Yuriy Hrystyna, Zoya Laktionova, Sashko Protyah, Vasyl (Tkachenko) Lyakh, Andriy Rachynsky & Daniil Revkovsky, Mykola Ridnyi, ruїns collective, Elias Parvulesco, Anna Scherbyna & Valentyna Petrova, Hito Steyerl, Oleksandr Surovtsov

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