steirischer herbst ’85

Peter Vujica

Festival dates

“The ‘styrian autumn’ of this year, like the one of last year, and also the one of next year is not a program set of styles and types from the prosecture of the trend makers and the trend breakers, in which pieces of the present, that has already been commented to exhaustion, are called ‘the future’, is neither a tailor shop for the new garments of some new Caesars, is more the trial to make a most significant present out of the knowledge about a contradicting past and the hope of a better future.
Mixing together established and controversial art without any shyness, always bearing in mind the fata morgana, that an artistic program should or has to become an artistic work, a picture made of songs, a song made of words and gestures, a great stage play altogether, tragedy and satyric drama in one, so colourful and confusing that the onlookers become actors, that art and life become one in the drama, that is creating itself, just like Don Quichote, who was imperturable on his way to such an utopian idea.”
—Peter Vujica

Before the opening, three evenings with readings, entitled Austrian Writers and Friends, had already taken place in New York in May within the framework of steirischer herbst. The official opening at the Forum Stadtpark began with premieres by Olga Neuwirth as well as Gunter Falk and Dieter Glawischnig, continued with readings and “music in the pavilion,” and concluded with the premiere of the piece Han und Amin (Han and Amin) by Jürg Laederach and a concert after midnight.

The premiere of The Holy Grail of Jazz and Joy by George Gruntz, with a prominent lineup of musicians including Bobby McFerrin and Sheila Jordan, was initially planned to be held in the Lurgrotte cave. However, concerns about the bats that lived in the cave led to the cancellation of the event for the audience; the performance in the grotto was recorded by the Austrian broadcaster ORF without an audience.

Hermann Nitsch, who had caused a scandal in 1981 with his Orgien-Mysterien-Theater (Orgies Mystery Theater), conducted an orchestra assembled especially for this evening for his 7. Symphonie (7th Symphony) at the Haus der Jugend. From the perspective of theater history, the premiere of Heiner Müller’s auto-dramatic text Bildbeschreibung (Image Description) in the Redoutensaal of the Schauspielhaus can surely be regarded as trailblazing.

trigon 85, titled Synonyme für Skulpturen (Synonyms for Sculptures), was expanded by Wilfried Skreiner to include the Federal Republic of Germany (Isa Genzken, Rosemarie Trockel, and Kirsten Ortweg), England, France, Switzerland, and Spain for the first time. Also new in 1985 was the program item “smart art,” with productions between opera, concert, dance, and performance by Robert Ashley, Barbara Allen, Karole Armitage, Philip Glass, and others.




smart art


hermann nitsch

art sound

open spoons




Festival opening

21.09., 11:00
Forum Stadtpark
Opening by president Rudolf Kirchschläger
Premiere Olga Neuwirth : Der rosarote Zwerg auf dem Weg nach Garanas oder Die gelbe Kuh tanzt Ragtime 
Gunter Falk/ Dieter Glawischnig: Die dunkle Seite des Würfels

Text and Music, (Readings: Schuldt, Jürg Laederach and Peter Waterhouse, Music: BIT), Reminiscing (Films and Texts from the archives of Forum Stadtpark), Music in the pavilion (Big Band from the University of Music Graz), Readings (by H. C. Artmann, Wolfgang Bauer, Helmut Eisendle, Barbara Frischmuth, Reinhard P. Gruber, Klaus Hoffer, Ernst Jandl, Gert Jonke, Alfred Kolleritsch, Friederike Mayröcker)

"Dunkelkammer"- Reading with Hermann Treusch

Premiere Jürg Laederach: Han und Amin  




Aula des Bundesschulzentrums, Mürzzuschlag

Dom, Graz

Forum Stadtpark


Galerie Bleich-Rossi

Galerie CC

Galerie Droschl

Galerie H. + W. Lang

Galerie K

Galerie Moser

Gasthof Prettenthaler, Kindberg

Gasthof Rothwangl, Krieglach

Geidorfkino, Rechbauerkino, Forum Stadtpark


Haus der Jugend

Joanneum, Ecksaal

Kammermusiksaal (Grazer Kongress)

Kath. Studentenhaus Münzgraben


Kulturhaus Graz

Künstlerhaus, Neue Galerie Graz

Lurgrotte, Semriach bei Graz

Minoriten-Galerien Graz


Musikschule Deutschlandsberg

Neue Galerie Graz

Neue Galerie Graz, Künstlerhaus



Palais Attems

Palais Saurau

Redoutensaal des Schauspielhauses, Graz

Refektorium des Münsters

Römisch-katholische Pfarrkirche, Krieglach

Saal der Handelskammer Mürzzuschlag

Schauspielhaus Graz

Schloss Pichl, Mitterdorf

Sportplatz Hörbing, Deutschlandsberg

Stefaniensaal (Grazer Kongress)

Studiobühne der Grazer Oper

Studiobühne der Grazer Oper, Koralmhalle, Stefaniensaal (Grazer Kongress)

Universität Graz

Volkshaus Krieglach

VÖEST - Alpine - AG, Werk Krieglach

kath. Studentenhaus Münzgraben



Program booklet of steirischer herbst 1985: steirischer herbst, steirischer herbst ’85 (Graz: 1985)

→  Available here

Richard Kriesche (ed.), Artificial Intelligence in the Arts. Nr. 1 "Brainwork" (Graz: steirischer herbst, 1985)

→  Available here

steirischer herbst, Cultural department Graz, A. Bleich-Rossi, Phase II (Graz: 1985)

→  Available here

styrian autumn, Visitors 1 : Siegfried Anzinger, Erwin Bohatsch, Herbert Brandl, Josef Kern, Alfred Klinkan, Alois Mosbacher, Hubert Schmalix, Erwin Wurm (Graz: steirischer herbst, 1985)

styrian autumn, Visitors 2: Fritz Berger, Doris Jauk-Hinz, Gerhard Lojen, Franz Motschnig, Norbert Nestler, Frederike Nestler-Rebeau, Ingeborg Strobl, Josef Taucher, Gustav Troger, Lois Weinberger, Turi Werkner (Graz: steirischer herbst, 1985)

styrian autumn, From Austria. 6 Austrian Photographers: Heinz Cibulka, Seiichi Furuya, Friedl Kubelka-Bondy, Branko Lenart, Helmut Tezak, Manfred Willmann (Graz: steirischer hebrbst, 1985)

steirischer herbst, Koenigstein. Book 42. Faksimiledruck anlässlich der Ausstellung "Zeichen aus der Fremde" (Graz: 1985)

Neue Galerie am Landesmuseum Joanneum, trigon 85. Synonyme für Skulptur (Graz: 1985)

Katalin Néray, Drei Generationen ungarischer Künstler (Graz: Neue Galerie, 1985)