Ana Peraica on Wed, 2 Feb 2000 16:56:17 +0100


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Syndicate: Fwd: Do no longer exhibit in Austria! (fwd)


Dear all, 
I am forwarding you an e-mail I got from a Croatian theorist, who
recieved e-mail from Robert Fleck who wrote about what for austrian
artists mean enter of Haider into the gouverment. 
greetings,
ana 

Subject: 
          Do no longer exhibit in Austria! (fwd)
    Date: 
          Wed, 2 Feb 2000 09:35:58 +0100 (MET)
    From: 
          Mirko Petric <mpetric@umas.hr>
      To: 
          ana.peraica@janvaneyck.nl




Forwardiram poruku Roberta Flecka o tome sto ulazak Haidera u vladu znaci
za austrijske umjetnike i umjetnice.

Saluti,
m.



Nantes, 2.2.2000
Dear friends,
As you know, Austria got today the first federal government since the
end of 
World War Second with a big participation of nazis.
I am born in this country, have lived there for 24 years, now writing
for 
almost twenty years in austrian newspapers, studied political history 
(history of democracy...) in this country. Also through my familly, I
know in 
detail the inside stories of the FPOe - a party founded in 1948, after
the 
amnesty for the big nazi rulers, to be a legal cover for their activity.
In 
1986, Joerg Haider took over the party by a putsch with the aim to 
re-establish these origins, and to rehabilitate the nazi period in
Austria, 
and if possible in Central Europe.
The actual danger is much beyond Austria: in five years or, let's say,
after 
the death of Vaclav Havel, whole Central Europe can burn in the same way
like 
Austria now. The Czech Republic, Romania, Bulgaria, etc. are ready to
follow 
this political choice.
Regarding Austria, I am convinced since 1983, when Bruno Kreisky
retired, the 
first jewish chancelor in Central Europe since the birth of mankind,
that 
this spectacular comeback of the nazis must occure.

For contemporary arts, I see only one possible choice:

1. NO LONGER EXHIBIT OR COOPERATE WITH AUSTRIA
It has now become absolutely impossible, in moral terms, for any artist, 
galerist, museum curator or collector, to exhibit any longer in Austria,
or 
to cooperate with any Austrian institution. There is only one question
to 
ask: would you have exhibited in Nazi-Germany? Only with a complete
boycott 
of the local artlife, we can help the Austrian artists to survive. The
new 
government wants to show that "everything is as before", regarding
individual 
liberty. Since 1995, all international known Austrian artists are under 
pressure by the party of Joerg Haider; anonymous phone calls, Nazi-signs
on 
their cars, menaces to take their children - since five years, many 
internationally known artists in Vienna are only moving with their
familly in 
the city inside of closed cars. As far as I know, most of the jewish 
community is also behaving like this, because they were constantly
aggressed 
in the street. During the "100 Years" exhibition in 1998, the Vienna 
Secession had constantly nazi-signs, painted during the night, on the 
building; the Austrian federal police refused to consider these facts,
saying 
that "this is normal". The next years will be very hard for Austrian
artists. 
They all talked to me in the last years or months about leaving the
country. 
Even half of the actual students at the Vienna Academy were thinking
about 
leaving the country. For a writer, an intellectual, this is relatively
easy. 
For an artist, to change the country is very complicated. The only way
to 
help them, is to boycott the country itself. If you show to the Austrian 
population that the new government is outlaw, then - but ONLY then - the 
woters may consider during the next elections in 2003 that this may have
been 
a bad choice for their country.

2. HELP THE AUSTRIAN ARTISTS AS INDIVIDUALS
There can not be any preference for Austrian artists, but for you, 
international collegues, it is just about passing them a phone call or a
mail 
from time to time, taking care of them in some sense, just hearing if
they 
are ok and able to work and to exhibit. You all have very many contacts
with 
Austrian artists. Staying in contact with people ouside can be very
important 
for each of them.

I was born in this country, and as one of very few still active
international 
critics in this country, I have a heavy responsability. With the
nomination 
of the new government, I announced publically to stop my collaboration
for 
the big exhibition about the young art scene in Vienna (other curators:
Paolo 
Herkenhoff, Maaretta Jaukkuri, Rosa Martinez) scheduled for Oct.
2000-April 
2001 at Kunsthalle Vienna; to stop any collaboration with Austrian 
institutions; no longer going to Austria before the end of the 
nazi-participation in the government; trying to change citizenship. But
I 
will stay as much as possible in contact with the Austrian artists,
through 
the fact that I have a very close relationship with all artists
generations 
there, from the generation of the pioneers of an independend art life
(Maria 
Lassnig, Arnulf Rainer), to the young students.

Best Wishes,
Robert Fleck


Robert Fleck
post adress:
ERBAN-Ecole Regionale des Beaux-Arts de Nantes
Place Dulcie September
F-44000 Nantes
Tel +33 (0) 2 40 41 58 00
Fax +33 (0) 2 40 41 90 58
e-mail: FleckRob@aol.com
(please change my post adress from F-22240 La Bouillie or F-75001 Paris
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