The opening of the 55th edition of steirischer herbst will take place on Thursday, September 22, at 17:00 and will begin with the traditional speech by director Ekaterina Degot on Graz’s Hauptplatz (freely accessible). Afterwards, Raed Yassin will remember the Lebanese Civil War with a new performance (also freely accessible). Theatricality of a Postponed Death takes its cue from a theatrical puppet parade from the 1980s in Beirut and deals with artistic resistance against all obstacles, including those of war.

The performance ends in the Joanneumsviertel, where the historic entrance to the Neue Galerie Graz is reopened for the exhibition A War in the Distance, the centerpiece of steirischer herbst ’22. The entrance is flanked by Zhanna Kadyrova’s sculptures made from Ukrainian war debris and an installation by Kateryna Lysovenko. With the exhibition, the festival stages a series of encounters between rarely shown historical works and contemporary positions, including many newly commissioned works that offer a new reading of the collection through the prism of ignored wars, hidden histories, and repressed conflicts.

The exhibition opening (free admission) at 18:30 also marks the beginning of the durational performance Margit, Maya, and Vanessa by Augustas Serapinas at Neue Galerie Graz, which explores interpersonal relations in times of war through 25.9. Familiar spaces become hideouts, and Serapinas directs attention at details that are usually overlooked.

The final stop of the day is the premiere of Ming Wong’s Rhapsody in Yellow: A Lecture-Performance with Two Pianos at 21:00 in Helmut List Halle (16/12 euros), which traces the Sino-American “ping-pong” diplomacy. Two pianists improvise a performative unification of the two countries’ sonic regimes, accompanied by archival film and sound recordings. Following the performance, the evening will wind down at an afterparty (free admission) with music by Roma Gavryliuk.

22.9., 17:00

In German

8010 Graz

Freely accessible