This summer semester, Kunstraum Lakeside will focus on artistic and theoretical contributions to an analysis of media effects as well as forms of critical media use. In his installation “Hard Spell: A Promise to Generations” Zeigam Azizov devotes himself to the educative role of television and considers the aspect of its importance in the functioning of the individual in global capitalism. Using the example of a BBC programme in which children compete against each other in a spelling competition, Azizov reflects on the media manufacture of competitive, “self-confident” and pressure-resistant subjects who experience the filling out of an economically-determined role model as being freedom of selfexpression. Azizov’s interest is focussed on the significant interaction between entertainment and education, freedom and subjection as it appears in diverse reality shows as well as in the subjective internalisation of apparently objective demands of living and acting correctly.

Media do not only function as consciousness machines which permit ideological formations in the guise of games, spectaculars and public participation to appear natural. They also form spaces and tools of resistance against prevailing economic and political praxes or the common sense of their basic assumptions.

The formation of transnational (counter)publics in the web is the subject of a lecture by the media and cultural theoretician Rainer Winter. He investigates the communicative potential of civil society networks of this kind, their role within the framework of global activism (in connection with human rights or ecology, for example) and asks about their significance in a potential revitalisation of democracy.

While both Winter and Azizov examine the performative aspects of media as agents in the production of “false consciousness” or resistance and underline their global dimensions, in her exhibition “zentrum” Dorit Margreiter starts from a local stocktaking of social and urban changes and thematises the record of such changes in the media. Leipzig, like many other cities in what was the “East”, is undergoing a process of transformation which is manifest in, amongst other things, a post-socialist relationship to modernist architecture as constructed ideology. While in the Leipzig city centre buildings that are now regarded as out of place are demolished, there is, at the same time a historical/archival or aesthetic/romantic interest in the formal language of socialism. Using the example of the for Leipzig (and the GDR) characteristic and now disappearing neon lettering, Margreiter asks questions about the documentary “rescue” of significant design models. When she develops a new typography from concrete neon lettering, for example, Margreiter is not just observing but understands the role of the artist as participating in a process of historicisation.

The cultural scientist Anette Baldauf who, during Margreiter’s exhibition will give a lecture on Victor Gruen, the inventor of the shopping mall who originally came from Vienna, deals with one aspect of urban change which, as a result of the construction of the City Arcade is as topical in Klagenfurt as it is controversial. A film programme with works by Jun Yang, Carola Dertnig, Kanak TV and Phil Collins combines artistic criticism of media with subversive media use and delivers pointed analysis of the mediatisation of migration, war and economic crisis. With the concert by Prince Zeka and his band many aspects of the artistic and scientific contributions are expressed again – in another medium and numerous languages.

Christian Kravagna, Hedwig Saxenhuber