Archive for the ‘Politics’ Category

Albin Egger-Biker

A controversial art exhibit has again raised the debate over the presence of looted Jewish property in Austrian collections. Critics say the exhibition at Vienna’s Leopold Museum of works by Tyrolean painter Albin Egger-Lienz, a key figure in early 20th-century Austrian art, features over a dozen works of dubious origin.
The opposition Green party has already described the exhibit as “the greatest display of looted art in Austria in years” and has called for the paintings to be restored to their previous owners.

Well… I’m quite sure this nice piece of urban art has any political background… but still…


(Albin Egger-Lienz poster, Stiftgasse)

The Weinviertel, The Gemütlichkeit and The Dirt

In 1999 25 year old Nigerian, Marcus Omofuma, was killed during a forced deportation in Austria. He was handcuffed, chained and his mouth closed with adhesive tape by the three escorting policemen who claimed that the other passengers of the deporting Balkans Air flight should not be disturbed. Marcus Omofuma suffocated.

The Marcus Omofuma memorial, which was created and paid for by the sculptor Ulrike Truger, reminds of the violence against Omofuma. The stone was put up next to the opera building in Vienna without official approval and was therefore supposed to be taken down. However, in collaboration with the Green Party, a place for it was found between Mariahilferstra§e and Museumsquartier.

Currently the Weinviertel (a part of Lower Austria) is presenting its products and touristic services between Mariahilferstra§e and Museumsquartier — around the Omofuma memorial. A kinda surreal situation. The Gemütlichkeit and Fortress Austria. It’s like Weinseligkeit.


They also have a representation of Lower Austrian “Amethystwelt Maissau” (“the largest opencast amethyst vein in the world”).
Children can stir in dirt to find amethysts.
What a sad setting.


Austrian tourist industry. You rule.

Innermost Unifier @ World-Ex-Position Vienna

Alexander Nikolic is curating a great exhibition/performance cycle called “World-Ex-Position” here in Vienna.
You can find his curatorial statement here

I was invited to give a talk, and I decided to talk about one of my favorite topics… corporate anthems.

The Innermost Unifier: Today it’s the Corporate Anthem
A talk/audio performance by Johannes Grenzfurthner, monochrom (Vienna, Austria)

Using different historical and current examples (especially from the area of the hardware/software-industry), Johannes Grenzfurthner gives a theoretical and applied – and not unamusing – overview on the musical genre of corporate anthems.

Come and sing along. Powernapping is welcome, too.

@ World-Ex-Position Vienna (LABfactory, Praterstrasse 42/1/3, 1020 Vienna). Saturday, April 26, 7:30 PM.


The Islamic Republic, Israel’s struggle for existence and the European Reactions

Upcoming conference in Vienna.

Dear madams and sirs, dear friends,

I would like to invite you to the international conference “The Iranian threat – The Islamic Republic, Israel’s struggle for existence and the European Reactions”, which will be held on May 3rd and 4th at the Vienna University. Details concerning the program can be found on our website

The conference is organized by STOP THE BOMB – Coalition against the Iranian Extermination Program in cooperation with Vienna’s Jewish Community (IKG Wien), Scholars for Peace in the Middle East and the magazine Illustrierte Neue Welt. Its main purpose is to protest against the indifference wide parts of the Austrian and European public show when confronted with the Mullahs’ terror against Iran’s own population or with the extermination threats against Israel. Accordingly, the Islamic dictatorship in Iran will be described, analyzed and criticized, and European-Iranian relations will be examined (focussing on Germany and Austria). The issue of the Iranian regime’s nuclear weapons’ program will also be addressed, as well as the upcoming mega deal of the Austrian Oil Company OMV with Iran.

The conference will start with a screened video message by Nobel Peace Prize Laureate Elie Wiesel who is also a supporter of the STOP THE BOMB online petition.

Among the conference speakers are the German journalist Bruno Schirra, the political scientist Matthias Kuentzel and socialdemocratic MEP Paulo Casaca, as well as a number of Iranian dissidents like Kayvan Kaboli (Green Party of Iran) or Menashe Amir (former head of the Persian program of Radio Kol Israel) We are also glad to welcome Prof. Benny Morris (Ben Gurion University, Beer Sheva) and Prof. Jeffrey Herf (University of Maryland) as well as Patrick Clawson (Washington Institute) for their lectures.

Registration for the conference is not required. A short note about your participation, however, would be highly appreciated.

Important note: Please be prepared for security checks at the entrance. We apologize for any inconveniences caused by this and kindly ask you for your understanding.

Austrian Pirate Party demonstrates against school surveillance

German language press release of the Austrian Pirate Party

Piratenpartei veranstaltet Demo gegen die Videoüberwachung an SchulenUtl.: Die Piratenpartei Österreichs ruft Schüler und Schülerinnen auf an der Demonstration am Dienstag, 22. April, teilzunehmen Wien (OTS) – Die Demo richtet sich gegen die geplante Videoüberwachung an 10 Wiener Schulen. Der Demonstrationszug findet sich um 16.00 Uhr vor dem Palais Epstein(ehemaliger Standort Stadtschulrat) zusammen & marschiert dann über das Unterrichtsministerium zum Stadtschulrat.

Mitorganisator der Demonstration ist die Grüne Jugend. Die PPÖ kämpft seit ihrer Gründung gegen die zunehmende Überwachung.

“Bereits in der Ausbildung wird man als Verbrecher diffamiert.”, sieht Pressesprecher Wolfgang Weißinger die Situation kritisch.

Besonders die Überwachung am Wiedner Gymnasium stößt sie sauer auf, da Direktor Schmid, laut anonymen Informanten, jenen Täter kennt, der im Dezember eine Toilette in die Luft gesprengt hat.

Sollte die Datenschutzkommission die Videoüberwachung genehmigen, fordert die Piratenpartei den Stadtschulrat auf, dies zu unterbinden.

Außerdem vermisst die PPÖ ein Mitbestimmungsrecht für Schüler: “In keinem anderen Sektor werden die Hauptbetroffenen so wenig in Entscheidungen involviert.”, kritisiert die PPÖ die Verwaltung.


It’s Truth Time: Der “falsche” Hans Dichand Blog

I quote the Austrian Press Agency:

Utl.: Pressekonferenz: 17.12., 11 Uhr – Quartier für digitale Kunst

Wien (OTS) – Kaum hat sich Hans Dichand in die große, weite Welt des Bloggens gewagt (, da hat er auch schon einen satirisch schreibenden Doppelgänger ( – einen “Fälscher”, den Herr Dichand “ausforschen” und “überführen” will, wie er selbst in der Kronen Zeitung geschrieben hat.

Um ihm die Arbeit zu ersparen und die allgemeine Verwirrung um den doppelten Dichand aufzulösen, lädt “Der Fälscher” kommenden Montag, den 17. Dezember, um 11:00 zu einer Pressekonferenz ins Quartier für digitale Kunst (Quartier 21, Museumsquartier, Museumsplatz 1, 1070 Wien). Dort werden alle Geheimnisse aufgedeckt und etwaige Fragen beantwortet. Außerdem gibt es Gugelhupf.

I guess you have to come!

Online Petition: Weiterentwicklung des Fördersystems für die Wiener Netzkulturen

Sorry, German only.


The Kanzlermacher’s New Clothes

Hans Dichand, born in 1921, founded the Austrian “Kronenzeitung” (“Crown newspaper”) in 1959 and still acts as its editor in chief to this day. With over 40% market share, this right-wing populist paper has a unique position of power, and Dichand used this to influence Austrian politics to a great extent. This media-political practice earned him the nickname of “Kanzlermacher” (“He who makes the chancellor”).

Shortly after Mr. Dichand started blogging in November 2007, another weblog under his name appeared, where an unknown writer spoofs the newsmaker by using his rather unique tabloid writing style to express
views and ideas contrary to those of the original, and to poke fun at the mighty newsmaker.

This fake blog has gathered quite a bit of media attention over the last weeks, especially since the original Dichand saw it necessary to write about “The Forger”, as the fake blogger has been called on numerous occasions. / Original Dichand blog / Fake Dichand blog

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.


Here is David’s Flickr set.

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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