Regional Exhibition reaches across Czech-Austrian border
An exhibition spanning two south Bohemian and two Austrian towns is just about to get underway, with various religious and industrial venues hosting works that point to the shared roots on both sides of the border. As part of the extensive project, a number of historical buildings have been painstakingly renovated and will be open to the public for the first time.
The deputy mayor of Český Krumlov, Jitka Zikmundová, who helped organize the exhibition, says that the idea did not come from Czech institutions:
“It was an initiative from the Austrian side. They have a lot of experience with large-scale regional exhibits, which they have been organizing since the 1960s. They approached us in 2007 and told us that this time they want to reach across the border, and we were happy to accept this invitation.”
Most of the exhibit locations were reconstructed specifically for the project. The Austrian town of Freistadt renovated a defunct brewery, which is holding an exhibit of city life and trade, and where the opening ceremony is taking place on Thursday. Český Krumlov undertook a large-scale reconstruction of a neo-Romanesque synagogue, which will open in May with a photography show entitled “4 photographers, 2 countries, 1 region”.
The other thematic exhibits will be held at the old hospital in Bad Leonfelden, the monastery in Vyšší Brod and the regional museum in Český Krumlov. Jitka Zikmundová feels that there the project sends a strong message:
“I personally think that through this exhibit we will be able to show that this region was never divided, we just had an unpleasant fifty or forty-year break in relations.”
The organizers are hoping that some of the sites that were renovated for this project will become important centers of culture in the region once the project ends. The town hall at Český Krumlov has particularly high hopes for the early 20th century synagogue:
The Regional Exhibition Southern Bohemia - Upper Austria will run until the beginning of November.
For more information take a look at http://tinyurl.com/ccdrkfc