Galerie für Zeitgenössische Kunst Leipzig
08.06.2013 – 08.09.2013, GfZK-2
Opening 07.06.2013, 7 pm

curated by Elke Krasny

an exhibition of the Architekturzentrum Wien


The research-based exhibition is dedicated to the history of the idea of appropriating land in urban space.
Since the shockwave of modernisation that accompanied industrialisation towns and cities worldwide have had to face some very significant challenges. City-dwellers have always found a number of solutions in crisis situations, they are involved in bottom-up urban development. Self-build and selforganisation, settlements and fruit and vegetable gardening lead to other forms of collective cohesion, neighbourliness and fair distribution. Another world can be planted, as today’s community gardeners are clearly showing.


Following many years of international research, the curator Elke Krasny presents 19 historical and contemporary case studies of bottom-up urban development in Chicago, Leipzig, Vienna, Bremen, New York, Paris, Hong Kong, Istanbul, Porto Alegre, Havana or Quito. They provide an overview of informal, self-organised collective movements and of the spaces that are created by them. The exhibition shows how decisively small projects have often led, and are still leading, to major changes.


‘Hands-on Urbanism’ introduces an alternative urban history, one that poses urgent questions about the responsibility of design for architects and planners, and the resource-logic of towns and cities. What do architects do in this process, and what can be learned from the bottom-up in this urban history? Its role ranges from initiative via activism to conducting research. How are urban planning authorities reacting to these developments? The spectrum ranges from the founding of a settlement regulatory agency, via infrastructural measures and tolerance, to measures of support from the authorities, but also the introduction of new laws and legal sanctioning in official urban plans. 


Hands-on Urbanism 1850 – 2012. The Right to Green was initiated and curated by Elke Krasny forArchitekturzentrum Wien.

Exhibition graphic: Alexander Schuh
Scenography: Alexandra Maringer













Audain Gallery — Simon Fraser University

November 17, 2011–February 25, 2012
Opening: Wednesday, November 16, 7:00 pm

Audain Gallery SFU Woodward’s
Goldcorp Centre for the Arts
149 West Hastings Street
Vancouver BC

Hours: Tuesday–Saturday, 12:00–6:00 pm

This process-oriented exhibition is a collaborative project between the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre (DEWC), visiting artist Elke Krasny, the art collective desmedia, playwright and performer Marie Clements, the collective Coupe, students from the School for the Contemporary Arts at Simon Fraser University, and the Audain Gallery.

Photos: Kevin Schmidt

The DEWC is a self-initiated and self-organized space. Emerging out of what is now known as second wave feminism, women in the neighbourhood founded the centre in 1978. In many ways, it is an example of bottom-up feminist urbanism. In its day-to-day operation, the centre primarily represents Indigenous and older Chinese women, as well as other women of the Downtown Eastside community. What the women of the centre have claimed—and are still claiming—addresses and embodies all of the larger social, political, and economic transformations that have challenged the Downtown Eastside of Vancouver. These claims in fact constitute a vivid and vital historical mapping of the neighbourhood. Cecily Nicholson, a coordinator of the centre, significantly enabled the involvement of the DEWC in this collaboration.

Elke Krasny is a project-based artist and curator concerned with counter-hegemonic and feminist strategies of intervening in historical narratives, and with creating new constellations in the exchange of different forms of knowledge. The collaboration between the DEWC, Krasny, and the Audain Gallery centers on a research-based mapping that draws from the archival materials from the DEWC. Presented as a text-based “horizon line” spanning the walls of the gallery, the exhibition offers a visual map of the demands and aspirations of the DEWC community. These demands, both current and historical, address issues of poverty, violence and insecurity, social exclusion, the deferral of rights, and the legacy of colonialism. Although describing specific challenges, these claims are also expressions of conviviality and solidarity. These expressions exist between women, between women and their neighbourhoods, and between the women of the centre and their global context.

Beginning their practice in the early 2000s, desmedia provided access to the tools and training necessary for members of the Downtown Eastside community of Vancouver to self-produce their own media representations. As part of this practice, desmedia collected a large archive of interviews on digital video and other kinds of artwork. On the occasion of this exhibition, Krasny and the Audain Gallery have invited members of desmedia to reassemble their archive and to publicly debate its future.

Playwright and performer Marie Clements has a history of collaboration with the DEWC. Based on a series of workshops with the women of the DEWC, she will produce a new performance work for the exhibition that explores the potential of fiction to express critical truth. Like Krasny, Clements explores writing as both a collective process and a process of collectivization formed by way of an expressive multitude of subjectivities.

By initiating this collaboration, Sabine Bitter, the curator of the Audain Gallery, is expanding and changing the institutional parameters of the position, function, and mode of operation of a contemporary art gallery. This important, necessary form of “self-challenging of the institution” (and perhaps also “institutional self-challenging”) reacts to a setting defined by rapid urbanization, gentrification, and the all-inclusive yet reductive scope of neo-liberal economics, a setting in which the Audain Gallery is ultimately situated.

During the exhibition, the gallery will function as a platform and meeting ground for the production and exchange of different forms of knowledge. The “horizon line” will be a framing device and backdrop for a series of events, performances, and projects that aim to build neighbourhood constellations that go beyond familiar exchanges. They also provide opportunities for direct community participation and the fostering of critical dialogue, while also challenging the conventional expectation of what constitutes a gallery exhibition. As part of the events, women from the DEWC will teach a series of hands-on workshops, including instruction on cedar weaving and the sewing of button-blankets, to share their knowledge of traditional artistic practices.

For a full schedule of the events, performances, and projects, please go to

Working closely with the women of the DEWC, Elke Krasny, and our other collaborators, Mapping the Everyday examines the possibilities for and consequences of community-based political activity as articulated in relationship with contemporary artistic and institutional practices.

Mapping the Everyday: Neighbourhood Claims for the Future is realised in partnership with the Downtown Eastside Women’s Centre with support from the City of Vancouver’s 125th Anniversary Grants Program; the Austrian Federal Ministry for Education, Arts, and Culture; the Vancity Office of Community Engagement as part of Simon Fraser University Woodward’s Cultural Unit; and the English Department of Simon Fraser University.

About the Audain Gallery

The Audain Gallery serves as a vital aspect of the Visual Arts program at Simon Fraser University’s School for the Contemporary Arts. The gallery’s mission is to advance the aesthetic and discursive production and presentation of contemporary visual art through a responsive program of exhibitions and to support engaged pedagogy. The gallery encourages conceptual and experimental projects that explore the dialogue between the social and the cultural in contemporary artistic practices.

The Audain Gallery is curated by Sabine Bitter, working with gallery assistant Brady Cranfield.

Eröffnung: Mittwoch, 23. März 2011, 17.30 Uhr
Laufzeit: 24. März bis 28. August 2011

Eine Mitmachausstellung des ZOOM Kindermuseum Wien
Für Kinder von 6 – 12 Jahren (1. – 8. Schulstufe)

Continue reading…



With contributions by: Marianna Asatrjan, Mikael Asatrjan, Cactus, Paola di Bello, Joseph Dim, Aslan Esiev, Marlene Hausegger, Helsinki Viertelradio, Franziska Hederer, Michael Hieslmair / Michael Zinganel, Claudia Holzer, ILA, Christian Kasper / Josef Wurm / Georg Dinstl, Elke Krasny, Damian & Delaine Le Bas, Nana Mandl, Maryam Mohammadi, Norbert Prettenthaler, Nicole Pruckermayr, raus aus der box, Tere Recarens / Daniela Paes Leão, resanita, eva helene stern***, Stefan Schmitzer / Verena Michelitsch / Karin Lernbeiß, Edda Strobl, Škart, Bruno Toya – and many, many people who have taken part in workshops and participatory projects

Eröffnung: Samstag, 25. September 2010, 18 Uhr
im Rahmen des steirischen herbst 2010

Ausstellungsdauer: 26. September – 20. November 2010
Öffnungszeiten: MO–FR 10.00–18.00, SA 12.00–16.00
Im steirischen herbst auch sonntags 12.00 – 16.00
An Feiertagen geschlossen

Dialogführungen durch die Ausstellung und Entdeckungstouren durchs Viertel für Schulklassen und andere Gruppen nach Voranmeldung:, 0316/ 688306

In the exhibition all the works that were produced in the frame of workshops and participatory projects in spring and summer 2010 are on display. Exhibition venues are < rotor > and several locations in the Annenviertel area.
The city belongs to everyone, but who actually develops it? In the Annen district of Graz, a vibrant, very international part of the city, a wide variety of different forms of coexistence are being pragmatically tested every day, with resourcefulness and a gift for improvisation. The long-term “Annenviertel!” project uses a wide array of artistic and cultural strategies to demonstrate how this urban space, in which contrasting worlds are just a few steps away from each other, can be shaped and the voice of those who live here can be amplified.
For all the questions and problems facing this area, the challenge for those involved in the project is clear: to join forces to build a future in which transcultural coexistence has become normal and in which changes in the urban landscape as a result of immigration are not perceived as a threat. For the city is not – as some people would have us believe – conflict and fear, but above all an opportunity.



Freitag, 23. Juli 2010, ab 21.00 Uhr an der Bushaltestelle Hörnum-Steintal (nahe der Kunsthalle, Berliner Ring 9, 25997 Hörnum/Sylt)
Die Reihe „Boomtown Hoernum“ beginnt an bedeutender Stelle, an einer der zentralen Kleinarchitekturen des Insellebens: An der jüngst grunderneuerten Bushaltestelle Hörnum-Steintal regt Elke Krasny (Wien) zu einem Gespräch über Phänomene der „Syltisierung“ an, und Christoph Rauch (Hamburg) installiert zum Sonnenuntergang seine Arbeit „oder hier“. Ebenso werden weitere Aktionen bekannt gegeben, die über das gesamte Wochenende stattfinden werden.
„Boomtown Hoernum“ ist eine Veranstaltungsreihe in Zusammenarbeit mit Josef Sünder.
Foto: Alexander Ach Schuh

Freitag, 23. Juli 2010, 15.00 bis 18.00 Uhr
in der Kunsthalle Hörnum, Berliner Ring 9, 25997 Hörnum/Sylt:

Last Name
Eine Arbeit von Plan b
Elke Krasny & Cynthia Schwertsik
Fotografien und Texte

Frauen im öffentlichen Raum / Frauen ohne Raum im öffentlichen Raum / Öffentlicher Raum ohne Frauen / Frauen in der kollektiven Erinnerung / Kollektive Erinnerung und weibliche Geschichten


Bewegt man sich lesend und schauend durch die Stadt, so sind es die Namen von Männern die Straßen und Plätzen ihren Namen geben, nach wie vor – im großen und ganzen – die Zeichen, Denkmäler und Spuren einer männlich hegemonialen Geschichtsschreibung und Erinnerungskultur, die den offiziellen öffentlichen Raum prägen. Auf den zweiten Blick jedoch, wenn man die Augen dafür schärft und gezielt sein Augenmerk darauf richtet, dann sind sie schon präsent im öffentlichen Raum, die weiblichen Namen. Als Vornamen sind sie als Geschäftsschilder, als Namen von Geschäften über den ganzen Raum der Stadt verteilt, ob Doris Moden oder Erikas Fußpflege, ob Viktorias Café oder Hermis Weinstube … Frauennamen, Frauenvornamen tauchen auf, durchziehen die Straßen, nehmen sich ihren Platz in der Öffentlichkeit und erzählen eine andere Geschichte des öffentlichen Raums. Hier setzt das Projekt “Last Name” an. Nicht mit einem Nachnamen (dem Namen des Vaters oder dem Namen eines Ehemanns) setzen Frauen auf ökonomische Präsenz im öffentlichen Raum, sondern mit ihrem Vornamen. Um im Namen dieser Namen Geschichten und Anekdoten zu erzählen, um eine (fingierte) weibliche Erinnerungstradition in Gang zu setzen, ins Zentrum zu rücken, darum geht es im Projekt “Last Name”. Hier werden Erinnerungen geschaffen, Spuren aufgezeichnet und festgehalten, Erinnerungsspuren gelegt, ehe es zu spät ist. Ehe diese oft kleinen und höchst unterschiedlichen Geschäftslokale und Einrichtungen größeren Zusammenhängen weichen müssen, unter dem Druck der Marken, Serien und Labels anderen Einkaufs- und Konsumgewohnheiten weichen.

„Last Name“ ist eine namentliche Assoziationskette, die Frauenvornamen setzen Geschichte(n) in Gang: wie könnte das Leben von Doris oder Erika, Viktoria oder Hermi verlaufen sein, für welche wilden, abenteuerlichen, skurrilen, von der Norm abweichenden oder “ganz gewöhnlichen” Frauenbiografien stehen diese Vornamen ein, was für ein Leben verbirgt sich hinter diesen lapidaren Kürzeln ohne Nachnamen? Diese Frauenvornamen werden zum Sprechen gebracht, zu Leben erweckt und in einem anderen Kontext veröffentlicht. Fotografen und Texte fangen die Namen ein, in den Aufnahmen taucht der öffentliche Raum der Stadt auf, in den Texten die mögliche gelebte weibliche Geschichte als Geschichte des privaten Raums, die den öffentlichen streift, berührt, mitbestimmt und mitgestaltet.