Vienna/Serbia Raw – Our new neighbours

ViennaSerbia Raw – Our new neighbours

The way that fleeing people perceive their new country, environment, as well as
perhaps their current home is the focus of the photography exhibition
“Vienna/Serbia Raw – Unsere neuen Nachbarn” (“Vienna/Serbia Raw – Our new
neighbours”). After having been shown in Belgrade in October, the exhibitin takes place in a public space in Vienna.
The project is realized by Vienna based association “BLOCKFREI” in cooperation
with Serbian photography collective “Belgrade Raw” and the refugee association
“Ute Bock” in Vienna.

29 October – 14 November 2015
Mariahilferstraße 43
1060 Vienna
Opening: 29 October, 5:30 pm

The exhibition is a result of photography workshops with refugees from the Middle East and Africa, which took place between May and July 2015 in Subotica, Belgrade and Vienna. The participants had the opportunity to reflect together upon their experience and needs, as well as to work with their already existing photographic material in order to depict their background and parts of their journey to Europe. Some of them also produced new material, dealing with their current place of living and new circumstances.

Besides exploring the experiences of refugees, the project also examined the
reactions of their new surroundings to their presence, as this aspect is one of the
crucial elements for defining the position that they take in their new societies.
The project uses documentary photography as an universal way of communication,
which gives the participants the opportunity to express themselves and at the
same time sensitize the audience in regard to the life situation of the migrants.

The exhibition has the aim to enable higher visibility and awareness of the cultures
and heritage that displaced persons are bringing with them, as well as their
everyday problems, but from the opposite perspective – the perspective of “our
new neighbours”.

The collective “Belgrade Raw”, with its dynamic photographic and artistic
production atmosphere, as well as its 10 members, forms quite an unusual
occurrence in its surrounding. It was created almost by accident, without great
expectations and aspirations, by a generation of younger artists connected by the
identical attitudes toward the photographic medium, primarily for the purpose of
everyday, subjective recording of Belgrade – the city where all the members have
been born, live and work.

BLOCKFREI is an independent cultural organization based in Vienna since 2013. It
is conceived as a platform for innovative contemporary cultural praxis, with the goal
to support the cooperation between cultural groups from Austria and South-
Eastern Europe as well as other ethnicities living in Vienna. Such an interaction
increases the visibility of cultural variety present in Austria, where ethnic groups
from the mentioned region form a significant part of the society. BLOCKFREI
embodies the concept of mobility of artists and cultural professionals and strongly
believes that multicultural projects are of the highest importance and a significant
contribution to the global cultural and geopolitical sphere.