m1 (turm4)
Monday, 12. September 2005

B i t t e r W e b e r : L I V E L I K E T H I S !

With "LIVE LIKE THIS!", Camera Austria is presenting the first major solo exhibition of the Austrian artists, Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber, who have already carried out important international projects and taken part in key exhibitions worldwide. Since 1994, they have seen their work as a critical reworking of images as representatives of cultural discourses. In terms of subjects, they direct their attention to spaces, architectures and urban constellations. With the aid of precisely constructed images as interventions into circumstances of representation, they investigate the changes arising from social conflicts and contradictions of modernism as they collide with contemporary forms of globalisation. Especially set-up for Camera Austria, the exhibition creates a space for engaging with contemporary urban spaces as social environment and as political discourse - as a result, the relationships between architecture, visuality and representation, mediatization, politics and identity are reallocated in the exhibition space.

Curator: Reinhard Braun

The project was realised in cooperation with steirischer herbst 2005 in relation with its theme "polis on display".
The exhibition will be shown at Plattform, Berlin in April/May 2006.
As part of the opening ceremony the artists will be awarded the "Würdigungspreis für künstlerische Fotografie des Bundeskanzleramtes 2005".
With the kind support of Eternit company.

A comprehensive Germ./Engl. publication is released, with texts by Reinhard Braun, Catherine David, Jeff Derksen and Neil Smith, as well as an artists' conversation including Bik Van der Pol, Ken Lum, Andrea Geyer, Jayce Salloum, Marina Grzinic, David Thorne and Julia Meltzer (The Speculative Archive).
Edition Camera Austria, Graz 2005.
196 pages, 19, 5 x 24,5 cm, 100 colour and 30 b/w plates.
EUR 27,00

Orders and press copies:
Eva Leopold, F. +43 / (0) 316 / 81 55 509, e-mail: distribution@camera-austria.at

traces Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber's long-term engagement with the processes restructuring the city into this uneven landscape of neoliberal spaces, national spaces, and self-organized communities. Launched from multiple geographic scales, these processes are not new but have followed a jagged path toward market discipline and the shift to the city as a monochromatic site of consumptive practices and real-estate opportunities flanked by austerity programs and social exclusion for the under-consumers. (...) This creative destruction of cities, and the creative resistances it produces, are represented both coolly and analytically in Bitter and Weber's works, mediated through the rationalizing optics and perspectives of architecture and photography and artistic practices more broadly. But it is more accurate and acute to say that the projects in "LIVE LIKE THIS!" represent the sites where the global project of neoliberalism hits localized and nationalized contexts and is either absorbed into the culturally and place-specific contexts of Europe, North America, and South America or is met with forms of living, organizing, and dwelling that reject or confound the market-driven policies and atomizing effects of the neoliberalization of urban space.
A touchstone in Bitter and Weber's investigation has been the transformation of modernist spaces and the widening disjuncture between the beleaguered promises of modernity and the lived effects of neoliberalism. But this transformation is not the replacement of one failed social utopia with a more exclusive economic utopia, rather it traces the transformation of the nature of social promises over the last half century. And the much-criticized history of modernism, particularly of modernist architecture and urban planning, provides a condensed studio for revisiting the modernity debates and understanding the kinds of losses and victories that have seeped into the groundwater of globalization.

(Excerpt of the published essay "Making And Breaking Neoliberal Spaces" by Jeff Derksen and Neil Smith.)

Further information and press images:
Margit Neuhold, T. +43 / (0) 316 / 81 55 500, e-mail: exhibitions@camera-austria.at
or to be downloaded at: www.camera-austria.at

steirischer herbst 2005

Lendkai 1, 8020 Graz, Austria
T. +43 / (0) 316 / 81 55 500
F. +43 / (0) 316 / 81 55 509

Opening hours:
Tuesday to Sunday, 10:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Thursday 10:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m.

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