"Times of Dilemma" (Valletta18, Malta, 2018).

Silent Activism: for an Active Role of Art in Society and in the Public Realm

Tuesday, November 20, 2018 - 17:00 to 19:00
Publics, Sturenkatu 37-41 4B

The lecture is organized in cooperation with the University of the Arts Helsinki’s Academy of Fine Arts and the Saastamoinen Foundation. 

In times of the growing crisis of social values being under threat by the current political situation and the unpredictable future of Europe falling apart, the role of art and artistic strategies engaging in societal and urban issues gains an even more important significance.

In her talk Barbara Holub will present artistic strategies based on her research project „Planning Unplanned“ and show recent art projects engaging in creating situations for returning the responsibility to local people for taking action. With her projects she will also address the question, if art can have a function and how art can maintain its autonomy when engaging in societal/ urban issues.

Barbara Holub is an artist, architect and urban researcher based in Vienna. In 1999 Holub founded transparadiso with Paul Rajakovics as a transdisciplinary practice in between urbanism, art and architecture.
She was president of the Secession Vienna (2006-2007), visiting professor at the University of Applied Arts Vienna (2015) and lectures at the Vienna University of Technology. She received the Schindler Grant, MAK Center for Art and Architecture, Los Angeles (2004), the Otto-Wagner-Award for Urban Planning (2007) and the Austrian National Art Award (2018).

In her exhibitions and urban interventions Barbara Holub creates performative situations for urban acting, for developing visions and macro-utopias based on shared values of living together. Rather than propagating activism in a direct sense, Barbara Holub discretely encourages the individual responsibility of the participants – as "silent activism". In this way the various audiences between the art context /institutions and the public urban space become co-authors.

Holub's recent shows and current projects include "The Island is What the Sea Surrounds", European Capital of Cultural/ Valletta18, Malta (2018);  "Harbour for Cultures", Trieste contemporanea/ Trieste/ I (2017-2019); "The Blue Frog Society" (since 2010; "CrossSections", Kunsthalle Exnergasse, Vienna, 2018).


A Public  Lecture (as part of the ‘As an Artist in Society’ course)
Tuesday 20th November at 17-19
Location: Publics, Sturenkatu 37-41 4B, 00550 Helsinki