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Motif 2020

‘What happens when flags representing nations begin to disintegrate? When bright colours fade into pastel shades and flagpoles start to bend’, artist Andrea Salzmann asks when devoting herself to this year’s general theme of the Forum Alpbach – ‘Fundamentals’. Her answer: ‘The construct of the nation state will be exposed, which provides space for solidary thinking and acting. Communities could be redesigned in a global and cooperative manner – beyond exclusion and isolation. “All human beings are born free and equal in dignity and rights.”’ The performance artist’s thoughts are visualised in this year’s motif of the European Forum Alpbach.

‘“Fundamentals” are like signal flags. They provide orientation. Some have faltered or faded, others disappeared. The European Forum Alpbach 2020 aims to set signals that guide us through the 21st century’, says EFA President Franz Fischler about the artist’s concept.

Andrea Salzmann herself has lived and worked under many flags. Born in Vorarlberg, she moved abroad explore and better understand the world. Her work first brought her to Bilbao Arte as an Artist in Residence and then, as part of a studio scholarship from the Austrian Federal Chancellery, in Yogyakarta, Indonesia. Today Salzmann lives and works as a performance artist and dramaturg in Vienna, where she teaches at the Academy of Fine Arts. Her works regarding the flag motif will accompany this year’s Forum Alpbach and call into question how fundamental the construct of the nation is for us.