Down with weapons, again and again!
Intervention, Bertha-von-Suttner-Platz, Graz (AT), 2018
Series of 31 flags
C-prints on Tricoflagg (standard flag material), 100 cm x 140 cm
Steel cable, cable clips
In her site-specific debate Johanna Tinzl deals with football, fan culture, de-escalation and escalation at Bertha-von-Suttner-Platz in Graz. This square, actually half a square - Stadionplatz is immediately adjacent through Ulrich-Lichtenstein-Gasse and defines her key themes together with the football stadium – is currently a classic non-site. Quite considerable significance for this site also emerges in the lack of official signage bearing the square's name, in honour of the first female Nobel Peace Prize winner, which has been missing since 2015.
The spatial setting of the representative street Conrad-von-Hötzendorf-Straße, named after a warmonger, leading past half a square dedicated to the Austrian Nobel Peace Prize winner permits room for thought. The central elements of the installation are two succinct verbal word chains: »again and again«, a battle cry at football matches, and »Down with weapons!«, the title of von-Suttner's central work, a pacifist novel. The intervention encloses a semicircle and so expands the football sphere. The colouration using SK Sturm Graz's club colours, black and white, means that fan culture and the game - in which both aggressive acts and fairness are inherent - grow in significance. But the flags cannot be misappropriated.
Here, concern is also visualized over the spatialization of gender (in)equalities: In 2018 there are more than 800 street names in Graz commemorating men, and only 46 honouring women. Bertha-von-Suttner-Platz will be the 47th of those officially named urban spaces.
»Down with weapons, again and again!« was part of the art/research/peace project COMRADE CONRADE which was conceived and organised by Nicole Pruckermayr.