VALIE EXPORT CENTER
Linz has acquired the VALIE EXPORT Archive in April 2015. The living bequest comprises works of art, sketches, drafts, negatives and extensive archival material related to the work of the Linz born artist. The Archive will become part of the holdings of the LENTOS Kunstmuseum and constitutes the most substantial addition since the acquisition of the Gurlitt Collection in the 1950s. This is the first step the City of Linz has taken towards the operation of the VALIE EXPORT Center, an international research institution for media and performance art.
Using the VALIE EXPORT Archive as a basis, the City of Linz and its partner institute, the University of Arts and Industrial Design Linz, have agreed to operate an international research centre, the VALIE EXPORT Center. Forschungszentrum für Medien- und Performancekunst. The VALIE EXPORT Center will be Linz’s second research centre devoted explicitly to the work of an outstanding artist associated with the city, following the Adalbert Stifter Institute, which is operated by the province of Upper Austria.
The research centre aims to create a professional environment of the kind required for the scholarly analysis and appraisal of the VALIE EXPORT Archive, the publication of its contents and its public accessibility. These objectives are designed to make sure that VALIE EXPORT’s living bequest of her archive will be preserved for future generations and serve as a focus for academic research. Concentrating on VALIE EXPORT’s oeuvre, the VALIE EXPORT Center will be a reference point and a globally accessible source of inspiration for the arts, for scholarly analysis and for art education in the fields of media and performance art. It will serve as a basis for research work by third parties, which the Center will facilitate and support.
For these objectives to be achieved detailed attention must be given to the creation of a data bank, the long-term storage of all materials in the VALIE EXPORT Archive, public accessibility (online and physical) for research and study purposes, academic publishing activities and the regular staging of events.
The VALIE EXPORT Center entered its construction phase on 1 June 2015. In this phase, top priority must be given to stock taking and the drawing up of an inventory, the transfer of the archive from Vienna to Linz, the adaptation of the prospective venue and the setting up of the organisational infrastructure needed for the Center to become fully operational. The VALIE EXPORT Center is expected to open in 2017. Its prospective venue is the former cigarette factory, Austria Tabakwerke, in Linz. A comprehensive refurbishment of Building No. 1 has already been given the green light. Located in the southern part of the Tabakwerke complex, the building used to house cigarette production. A 320 m² section of the building has been exclusively earmarked for the VALIE EXPORT Center and will be adapted to its needs.