What are the pictures of Austria coursing through our minds, and those of others? We pursue this question in a distinguished interdisciplinary panel of guests, at the opening of our Collection with a View #5.
In addition to the people and landscape, cultural production shapes a country’s image of itself and others’ of it. Architecture plays a particularly important role in the identity of a nation. What sort of architecture dominates the images of Austria at home and abroad? In The Sound of Music, Julie Andrews sings “I have confidence in me” in front of the baroque ensemble of the Residenzplatz in Salzburg — actually a perfect message for the New Austria of the post-war era. The best known film about the Alpine republic has probably influenced Austria’s international image more than the New Year’s Concert, Sachertorte, St Stephen’s Cathedral and Mozartkugels. Over 50 years have passed since the film was made, but have the images of Austria transported in it changed at all?
Many facets typical of their time can be read from the built heritage. But beyond that, too, we want to investigate the question of how well known pictures, many of them used for tourist purposes, dominate perception and the discourse? What has happened since the nation’s culturally conservative take-off in the 1950s?
Franzobel, author, Vienna
Karin Moser, media and contemporary historian, Vienna
Wolfgang Müller-Funk, literary scholar, Vienna
Monika Platzer, architecture historian, Az W
Brigitta Schmidt-Lauber, cultural scientist, University of Vienna
Moderated by Oliver Kühschelm, economic and social historian, Vienna