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Austria’s Culture on the Cutting Edge

Find out what happened when two dancers travelled from one end of Austria to the other with a group of bloggers.
 
 

Manaho from Japan and Dante from South America are modern dancers with a passion for character dance. They love assuming roles and improvising as they go. They are joined by five international bloggers, each with a camera, who are always on the look-out for for the right moment and ready to capture it on film.

A moment in movement, then silence, again movement – accompanied by the soft clicks of the cameras. The backdrop is Austria, the stage setting modern. Manaho and Dante dance at a wide variety of contemporary-art venues in locations such as Vienna and Bregenz, where they encounter new architecture and draw inspiration from unusual perspectives.

Five Cultural Locations in Five Days

1.   Culture That Moves Vienna

It's hard for five bloggers and two dancers to remain unnoticed in a museum. The unusual septet injects dynamism into the place, otherwise characterised by tranquility and the silent contemplation of pictures. The Leopold Museum is dedicated to classic Viennese Modernism; here you can find works by the great artists of Viennese Jugendstil, of the Wiener Werkstätte and of Expressionism. The museum houses the world’s most important and extensive Egon Schiele collection as well as masterpieces by Gustav Klimt, one of the founders of the Vienna Secession. The permanent exhibition also features works by artists such as Josef Hoffmann and Koloman Moser, representatives of the Wiener Werkstätte and co-founders of the Secession.

Tip: In 2018 Vienna pays tribute to Viennese Modernism and all its Secession artists. In addition to the Belvedere, the Museum for Applied Art, the Wien Museum and the Kunsthistorisches Museum, the Leopold Museum also has a range of events planned for this year, which marks the 100-year anniversary of the death of four outstanding figures of Austrian cultural history. The painters Gustav Klimt and Egon Schiele, the architect Otto Wagner and the artist Koloman Moser all died in 1918. Click here for more information.

“Come to Austria for art, music and unbelievably beautiful landscapes.”

Ana Barros © Gui da Rosa Ana Barros © Gui da Rosa Ana Barros (Portugal), Blogger
  • Museumsquartier in Vienna © Vienna PASS / Bernhard Luck Museumsquartier in Vienna © Vienna PASS / Bernhard Luck
  • Leopold Museum Wien © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis Leopold Museum Wien © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis
  • Leopold Museum Wien © Anna Devis Leopold Museum Wien © Anna Devis
  • Leopold Museum Wien © Konrad Langer Leopold Museum Wien © Konrad Langer
  • Leopold Museum Wien © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis Leopold Museum Wien © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis
  • MuseumsQuartier © Ali Schafler MuseumsQuartier © Ali Schafler

2.   Culture That Moves Graz

Graz is a major player in the museum world. The Universalmuseum Joanneum is Austria’s oldest and, after Vienna’s Kunsthistorisches Museum, second-largest museum, and is spread over twelve locations in the city. The Kunsthaus Graz is one of them.

The Kunsthaus Graz was built in 2003, the year the city was European Capital of Culture, and since then has become the modern architectural landmark of Graz. This museum, whose exhibition programme focuses on contemporary art of the past five decades, is part of the Universalmuseum Joanneum. Because of its shape and colour, the Kunsthaus is affectionately referred to by the locals as “the friendly alien”.

Tip: You can delve deeper, literally, into Graz’s culture when you enter the Neue Galerie Graz in the Joanneum Quarter. Escalators lead down to the underground entrance. The 2,000m-square space exhibits contemporary art movements, with a focus on artistic development in Austria and its neighbouring countries. In addition, over 60,000 individual objects shed light on past epochs. Styles such as Biedermeier, Realism, Jugendstil and regional forms of classical modernism are on display, as well as post-1945 paintings by Austrian and international artists.

  • Joanneum Quarter © Graz Tourismus  / Harry Schiffer Joanneum Quarter © Graz Tourismus / Harry Schiffer
  • Kunsthaus Graz © Kristina Kulakova Kunsthaus Graz © Kristina Kulakova
  • Kunsthaus Graz © Konrad Langer Kunsthaus Graz © Konrad Langer
  • Kunsthaus Graz © Ana Barros Kunsthaus Graz © Ana Barros
  • Graz, Joanneumsviertel © Österreich Werbung Graz, Joanneumsviertel © Österreich Werbung
  • Graz, Joanneumsviertel © Konrad Langer Graz, Joanneumsviertel © Konrad Langer
  • Kunsthaus Graz © Ana Barros Kunsthaus Graz © Ana Barros

3. Culture That Moves Bregenz

The Kunsthaus Bregenz stands on the shore promenade of Lake Constance and is a technically sophisticated modern structure. In keeping with its architectural character, the museum presents international contemporary art. The real mission of a museum – being a place for artworks and a place for people who want to experience these pieces in a tranquil environment – was achieved over twenty years ago by the Swiss architect Peter Zumthor with his design for the Kunsthaus Bregenz. The Kunsthaus is no less modern than it was when it was built. Its quality lies in the incorporation of natural light. The building’s glass sheathing absorbs the changing light of the sky and the hazy light of the lake, reflects light and colour back out and simultaneously reveals something of its inner life.

Tip for a “change of perspective”: The Vorarlberg Museum is located only a few steps from the Kunsthaus Bregenz but tells a completely different story. Here, you can learn more about the regional history of the province. And a look out the window is worthwhile: you'll find the lake directly at your feet.

“Come to Austria to encounter the perfect work/life balance, top quality, beautiful nature and pulsating cities.”

Kristina Kulakova © Ana Barros Kristina Kulakova © Ana Barros Kristina Kulakova (Austria), Blogger

4.  Culture That Moves the Bregenzerwald

When a village such as Krumbach in the Bregenzerwald decides to have the shelters for its bus stops designed by internationally acclaimed architects, then a bus stop is more than just a bus stop: the result is seven individual shelters – distinctive and unique.

How did it come about? In 2014 the village of Krumbach launched the BUS:STOP architecture project. In cooperation with the Architekturzentrum Wien and the Vorarlberger Architektur Institut, seven architecture firms from China, Norway, Chile, Spain, Belgium, Japan and Russia were invited to design seven bus stops. The payment for the architects was a stay in the Bregenzerwald, and local craftspeople actively supported them in the construction process.

Tip: The Bregenzerwald region is not only considered a pioneer in wood architecture; it is also ahead of its time in other ways as well. The Werkraum Bregenzerwald is an association of innovative craftspeople from the area who fuse contemporary design with traditional craftsmanship. In 2018 one can again look forward to the “Handwerk+Form” competition, held every three years.

Exhibition dates: 13 and 14 October; 19 to 21 October 2018, open daily 10 a.m.-6 p.m.

“Music, a green landscape and multi-faceted architecture.”

Anna Devis, Bloggerin © Österreich Werbung Anna Devis, Bloggerin © Österreich Werbung Anna Devis (Spain), Blogger
  • Busstop Krumbach, Bregenzerwald © Österreich Werbung Busstop Krumbach, Bregenzerwald © Österreich Werbung
  • Bregenzerwald, bus:stop Krumbach © Österreich Werbung Bregenzerwald, bus:stop Krumbach © Österreich Werbung
  • werkraum Bregenzerwald © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis werkraum Bregenzerwald © Daniel Rueda und Anna Devis
  • Busstop Krumbach, Bregenzerwald © Ana Barros Busstop Krumbach, Bregenzerwald © Ana Barros
  • Werkraum Bregenzerwald © Werkraum Bregenzerwald / no  name Werkraum Bregenzerwald © Werkraum Bregenzerwald / no name

5. Culture That Moves Wattens

The Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Wattens is much more than a glittery paradise of sparkling crystals. It is a one-of-a-kind art and adventure park. Millions of people from all over the world have visited the Crystal Worlds since its opening.

It all started with the 100th anniversary of the company. In 1995 the Swarovski family commissioned the Austrian multimedia artist André Heller to create what is now the internationally renowned Crystal Worlds in Wattens (near Innsbruck). This extraordinary place of fantasy, art and playfulness has now become a fixture of the Inn Valley. Around the mighty Giant, which watches over the entrance to the Crystal Worlds, the 7.5-hectare garden landscape offers a large number of fantastic attractions.

A cosmos of marvel as emerged here over the years. In addition to André Heller’s Crystal Dome, visitors can experience a total of fourteen Chambers of Wonder, designed by renowned international artists and designers like Alexander McQueen, Tord Boontje and Brian Eno. Tip: The Crystal Worlds has grown again: in 2017 four new Chambers of Wonder were added. A magical realm of human creativity.
 

“For me Austria means mountains, Kaiserschmarren and the unique dialect.”

Konrad © konaction Konrad © konaction Konrad Langer (Germany), Blogger
  • Eingang Swarovski Kristallwelten © Swarovski Kristallwelten Eingang Swarovski Kristallwelten © Swarovski Kristallwelten
  • Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Tyrol © Swarovski Kristallwelten Swarovski Crystal Worlds in Tyrol © Swarovski Kristallwelten
  • Crystal Dome (Swarovski Crystal Worlds) © Swarovski Kristallwelten Crystal Dome (Swarovski Crystal Worlds) © Swarovski Kristallwelten
  • Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Österreich Werbung Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Österreich Werbung
  • Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Ana Barros Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Ana Barros
  • Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Konrad Langer Swarovski Kristallwelten in Wattens © Konrad Langer
Kunsthaus Bregenz © Anna Devis Kunsthaus Bregenz © Anna Devis

Manaho - the Dancer

Manaho Shimokawa is a performance artist, dancer, choreographer and model. Born in Fukuoka, Japan, she was passionate about dance even as a young child. After many years of dedicating herself to classical ballet, she studied contemporary dance at the Music and Art University of the City of Vienna from from 2009 to 2013.

Her love for different cultures has led her to get to know dance styles worldwide. She has incorporated influences from Latin American, flamenco, traditional Japanese and African dances into her style. Manaho likes to refer to herself as a "chameleon dancer" who creates her own style by blending different genres together.

 
Kunsthaus Bregenz © Ana Barros Kunsthaus Bregenz © Ana Barros

Dante - the Dancer

Dante Murillo, born 1982 in Colombia, lives and works in Vienna. He graduated from the Universidad Javeriana in Bogotá in media communication studies. In 2006 he began his education at the Anton Bruckner Private University in Linz, graduating with a BA and MA in Contemporary Dance and Dance Education/Movement Studies.

Dante tours the world as a dancer and performer. Since 2011 he has been working on his own choreographic work. He is interested in audiovisual concepts and tells stories through contemporary dance.

 
Dandario - Musiker © Christoph Welkovits Dandario - Musiker © Christoph Welkovits

Dandario - the Musician

The Viennese musician and producer Darius Edlinger, aka Dandario, uses piano and specific, cleverly set drum patterns, to conjure up stimulating atmospheric scenes. Dandario's electronic music is audibly jazzy, but also classically inspired, and he achieves this through use of broad synth pads, wonderful melodic sequences, variable structures and superstructures.

Most recently, he performed live at the Sound: frame Festival and also served as the main act for the prestigious ImPulsTanz festival. He has also performed on stages alongside international acts such as Anderson. Paak, Squarepusher, Fiva, Lylit, and many others.

www.dandario.com
www.facebook.com/dandariomusic

5 Cultural Destinations

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