New York, 24 August 2011 Press release

Michael Spindelegger to open new exhibition of the AUSTRIAN CULTURAL FORUM in New York in September

New York - On 20 September 2011, Vice Chancellor and Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger will open the autumn exhibition titled "Beauty Contest" at the Austrian Cultural Forum in New York. For the Director of the Cultural Forum Andreas Stadler, the intention behind "Beauty Contest" was to reveal and question racist, sexist, and youth-cult connotations of beauty. The exhibition will be presented in cooperation with the art collection of the Culture Department of the Municipality of Vienna (MUSA), and was jointly curated with MUSA Director Berthold Ecker and journalist-publisher Claude Grunitzky.

The show, which will open the autumn programme of the Forum in mid-town Manhattan, will display works from the MUSA, private items on loan, as well as works from New York galleries. The artists include well-known names such as Leslie De Melo, Sissi Farassat, Matthias Herrmann, Kalup Linzy, Katarina Schmidl, Muntean/Rosenblum, and Petra Buchegger who address and critically examine the notion of beauty in their works.

"Beauty Contest", however, will also present a series of commissioned works, including performances and installations by Clarina Bezzola and Evangelia Kranioti, Jakob Lena Knebl, and Maria Petschnig. Some of the works will be displayed in public places, including the New York Times Square, in collaboration with New York institutions such as the "Performa" visual art performance festival.

Following New York, the "Beauty Contest" exhibition will be on display in the MUSA ( in Vienna from February to June 2012.

Kerstin Schütz-Müller
Austrian Cultural Forum New York
11 East 52nd Street
New York, NY 10022
+1 212 319 5300 DW 203