Archive for October, 2007

Red Vienna: The Buildings

Our resident artist David Fine went on a tour of “Red Vienna”. Vienna, as you may know was a very progressive socialist city in the 20’s. David joined Richard Barbrook to see some of the Red Viennese buildings, like famous Karl Marx Hof, the longest housing building in the world and site of battle during the Austrian Civil War.

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Here is David’s Flickr set.

Midnight Movies Halloween Special

Tomorrow exquiste Halloween special @ Vienna’s Schikaneder cinema.

Hosted by Mister Horror: Martin Nechvatal.

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Knights Of The Round Consumer Table

I like the shop window display of Bobby’s British Supermarket. Could fit into one of the really bad episodes of “Sliders”.

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GameJew in Vienna

I guess that some of you still don’t know that GameJew is in Vienna for some time. He is resident artist @ Subotron and you should check out his recent video episodes.

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Morgenlatte

If you are the parent of a young child and live anywhere within the “first nine,” you’ve almost certainly already heard of or been to the Smalltalk Kids Cafe just off of Mariahilferstra├če. For those not in the know, it’s basically a big open room that is divided into 3 parts: a bar area, an open area with tables and booths, and a large, staffed play area with innumerable toys and equipment for the amusement of the youngsters. The whole place is, of course, non-smoking.

I applaud this effort, and have visited quite a few times. So, apparently, has the rest of Vienna. This place is a serious success. It’s always crowded, and word is spreading quickly. It underscores something that I’ve been ranting about since I moved here, and I hope it points toward a trend. The other day I was lounging there with my wife, my two kids, and another couple with their two kids, and we agreed: if the same company or a similar place opened a location 2 blocks away, it would be equally successful. So I think we’ll see a huge boom in child-friendly establishments in the years to come.
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Richard Barbrook comes to Vienna

Richard Barbrook is one of the most radical critics of the neo-liberal cyber-elite. In contrast, Barbrook thinks that the importance of the latest wave of technological innovation lies precisely in its ability to challenge the ideologies of the self-proclaimed opinion leaders. The Net allows for the emergence of spontaneous and flexible virtual communities, defining themselves less by market exchange than by social convention.

He’ll present his new book ‘Imaginary Futures’ @ QDK (Museumsquartier) on Wednesday, October 24 (7 PM).

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Sturm is evil

My head. My head!!

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David Fine and his Arnold

David Fine is our new monochrom artist in residence. He is from San Francisco, USA. One of the first things he did was writing an email to his governor.

Dear Mr. Schwarzenegger,

I am in Austria for a couple months visiting friends. As my elected public servant, I hope you can give me advice about what to see here. I’m in Vienna now, but I’ll be travelling to Graz (a place you should be familiar with!) in a few days.

Also I’m having trouble as nobody seems to use electric dryers here. How does one dry laundry when it is cold out? Perhaps this could help California solve its energy problems!!

I hope everything is doing well back home, let me know if you would like me to bring souveneirs or chocolates or anything. I will talk to you again later.

Best,

–David Fine

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Antifreeze

I am sure that it is not without some degree of Schadenfreude that Austrians read stories about the recent scandal regarding Chinese toothpaste and its antifreeze content when Austria itself was embroiled in a terrible scandal during which it was discovered that diethylene glycol was being added to Austrian wine.

The Austrian wine industry is finally truly recovered, and the recent opening of the New York Times “paywall” has made finding out about it that much easier for the English-reading community.

The plus side of all of this is that Austrian wine is making serious gains in reputation and quality. And while tiny Austria will never be on a footing with France or Italy in terms of wine production capability, there could be a huge boon for vintners focussing on quality products while the EU money flows into the development of Austria’s wine industry.

The Apple/BMW mantra applies: one does not need a huge market share, only a reputation for quality products to earn a healthy profit and a loyal consumer base.

Long Night Of Museums

The Long Night of Museums is an ORF-sponsored event during which something like 80 museums in Vienna stay open late this coming Saturday, October 6th.

Here’s my question, since I have never been: is it fun? Is there wine?

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