Steirischer Herbst Reveals Details for 2018 Edition

Steirischer Herbst, the annual interdisciplinary contemporary arts festival that takes place in the Styrian capital of Graz, Austria, has announced that its fifty-first edition will explore the notion of belonging to a nation. Titled “Volksfronten” (Popular Fronts), which refers to the joint alliance of liberals, socialists, and communists against fascism in the US and Europe in the 1930s, as well as to the name of ultra-right-wing nationalist groups, will kick off on September 20.

This year’s event marks the first time that the festival will be led by a non-European curator, Russian art historian Ekaterina Degot. She will be assisted by a curatorial collective comprised of Övül Ö. Durmusoglu, Katalin Erdödi, Henriette Gallus, Dominik Müller, Birgit Pelzmann, Christoph Platz, Johanna Rainer, David Riff, and Jill Winder, with Georg Schöllhammer serving as an advisor.

The three-week program will present installations and performative works across multiple locations throughout the city. A parade by the American theater group the Bread and Puppet Theater, a performance on the history of National Socialism by Slovenian theater director Dragan Živadinov, and a stage production that revisits the repoliticizing of The Sound of Music, 1965, will inaugurate the event.

Other highlights of the festival include performances by artist Roee Rosen and choreographer Michiel Vandevelde, among others; taxi tours by TIB, Theater im Bahnhof Graz; an installation by Milica Tomić that revisits a labor camp on the outskirts of the city; Henrike Naumann’s alternative history of twentieth-century Austria; and the Vienna-based artist Yoshinori Niwa’s collection of unwanted memories of the fascist era.

The full list of participating artists will be released in July. Among the artists creating new commissions for the event are Rossella Biscotti & Kevin van Braak, Christian von Borries, the Bread and Puppet Theater, Lars Cuzner, Department of Ultimology, Ines Doujak, Nicoline van Harskamp, Victoria Lomasko, Henrike Naumann, Yoshinori Niwa, Roee Rosen, Theater im Bahnhof, Milica Tomić, and Dragan Živadinov.