The Salzburg International Summer Academy of Fine Arts, founded in 1953 by Oskar Kokoschka as the "School of Vision", in Hohensalzburg Fortress, is the oldest of its kind in Europe.
Every year, some 300 participants from more than 40 countries attend some 20 courses offered in two fixed locations: Hohensalzburg Fortress and the Kiefer quarry in Fürstenbrunn, as well as in further temporary spaces in the city of Salzburg. Well-known artists, curators and critics from all over the world offer courses focusing on topical questions of art production, as well as curatorial practice and writing about art.
Special features of participants' stay in Salzburg are the fantastic atmosphere in the locations, the outstanding quality of the teachers and the first-rate programme of events, which includes Lunch Talks, lectures and discussions on the history and theory of art, vernissages, city walks, etc. For many people, the Summer Academy provides a unique opportunity to devote themselves exclusively to reflecting on and producing art. Participants reassess their own roles as artists/curators/writers and the social function of their art production, also exploring possibilities for opening up new ways of bringing their work to public notice. This helps to form new networks, which often last a lifetime, and which are of immeasurable importance in the art world of today.
The Summer Academy is open to anyone interested. Some two-thirds of participants are professionals (artists and art students). All applicants submit to a process in which the teachers of the courses chosen decide on acceptance; however, the proportion of rejected applications is extremely small.
In 2013, the Salzburg International Summer Academy of Fine Arts celebrated its 60th anniversary.
Film by Peter Beringer
first broadcast at ORF 2, kultur.montag, 1 July 2013, 11.45 p.m.
Hildegund Amanshauser, director since 2009, has enlisted many new distinguished international artists to teach at the Summer Academy – including Monika Baer, Norbert Bisky, Tania Bruguera, Alice Creischer/Andreas Siekmann, Milena Dragicevic, Peter Friedl, Jitish Kallat, Lucie McKenzie, Robert Kuśmirowski, Rebecca Morris, Senam Okudzeto, Elfie Semotan/Roberto Ohrt, Hubert Scheibl and Mladen Stilinovic. She initiated highly successful courses at the Summer Academy, in curatorial practice and writing on art (with Jennifer Allen, Maria Lind, Juan A. Gaitán, What, How & for Whom/ WHW, Nancy Adajania, Bassam El Baroni, Anders Kreuger, Joanna Warsza, Raimundas Malašauskas).
The public programme of events has a special focus which changes every year (2010/artistic techniques, 2011/global art, 2012/the studio, 2013/professional, amateur or genius?, 2014/CITIES – spaces for art, politics, living…, 2015/The production of meaning). International curators, critics, art historians and artists give lectures and hold open discussions.
Examples on YouTube