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In Between the Thought and the Artwork - The Focus is on Art Production!

Dobar dan svima! I would expect many of the Salzburger folk understand my greeting well, for all others - Good day to you all!


I am Ana, a Belgrade native, an art blogger and the chronicler of the 2017 Summer Academy. As an art historian, I’ve always had a special interest in heritage, although my nature has always drawn me towards contemporary art. Still, here in Salzburg, I am finding for the first time [very] distant remnants of my Slavonian heritage. It’s mainly in the food, the language and in the taste for lavish, clean and beautiful, reminding me of the days of Maria Theresa and her rule. While historical monuments can fascinate and inspire me, nothing parallels the excitement of knowing that a work of art is being created now, some piece that might be great someday, hung in a museum or breaking a record in an auction. For years I have followed the Academy blog wanting a piece of that experience when art is being produced literally in the next room. No studio visit can parallel being next to a massive act of creation for weeks, where I hope to be able to absorb a shred of that energy and return to my own contemplative origins, where every step of the artistic action matters and where observing the making of a piece is the most exciting thing.


The Venue of Summer Academy at Hohensalzburg Fortress


Curiously, this edition of the Salzburg Summer Academy has an impelling motto - Why produce art? An artist might often wonder, questioning everything, from the original thought to the final work. Still, art production remains at the very core of each creative process, as the action always comes before the result. Looking around the contemporary art world today, it’s easy to detect a million of different ways of producing art, but we can also notice that the creative act itself is being given a new significance.


The Public at the Opening of the Summer Academy 2017


Three major art events coincided this year - the Venice Biennale, quinquennial dokumenta 14 in Kassel and Athens, and the decennial Skulptur Projekte Münster. Everyone who follows art must realize that this concurrence is the art-world equivalent of being hit with a comet. And while critics deliberate whether any of these exhibitions answered any of the questions relevant today, it’s hard not to notice that all of them suggest a return to the origins of art, drawing from many different cultures around the globe. As the Biennale celebrates art exclaiming “Viva Arte Viva”, dokumenta 14 juxtaposes practices related to two cities of very different historical, socioeconomic and cultural backgrounds, while Skulptur Projekte curatorial team works with new definitions of public art in the era of overwhelming digitalization. All of these curatorial concepts reject the culture of instant visuals/values, superficial aesthetics, and short memory and address deeper issues. To all of them, organic art production is of the essence as the principle through which the artists embed their reflections and their experiences into whatever shape may be the outcome. We can experience many different manifestations of the artistic process regardless of the medium, delivering views built on the grounds of solid production.


The Venue of Summer Academy - Where Art is Made 


Artists, art students, and devotees have come to Salzburg this year to elaborate on this very experience, granting us the insight into various ways of producing art as they explore the new models of expression and presentation. I will be here to observe, follow and slowly knotting this digital quipu after which we will remember this artistic summer. Using the forces of the Internet for good, join me in weaving the story of this year’s Summer Academy as I get to know its people and its events unfold. 


See you in the coming weeks! 

Ana Bambić Kostov


The Summer Academy Director Hildegund Amanshauser introduces the Course Teachers
17/07/17 18:55 Summer Academy 2017

1 comment

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