Vita Zaman Will Co-Direct Viennafair

Vita Zaman, Christina Steinbrecher. (L-R) (Courtesy Slava Filippov/VF Betriebsgesellschaft mbH)

Vita Zaman, formerly of IBID Projects in London and the Pace Gallery, who is currently with Brooklyn’s Journal Gallery, has been named co-director of the Vienna contemporary art fair Viennafair, fair organizers announced in a press release today.

Ms. Zaman is joined by Christina Steinbrecher, her co-director. Fair organizers had planed to name a third director but, the press release explains, a third director is no longer perceived as necessary.

Entire severe press release follows.

(Vienna, June 1, 2012) In their meeting on May 29, 2012, the shareholders of the VF Betriebsgesellschaft mbH confirmed the contracts with the two artistic directors Christina Steinbrecher and Vita Zaman. The decision of the VF Betriebsgesellschaft mbH has been reinforced all the more given that both artistic directors could withdraw from their former positions earlier than originally planned. This development caused the VF Betriebsgesellschaft to not appoint a third position that was perceived as necessary before. From now on, Christina Steinbrecher and Vita Zaman will perform their functions based in Vienna and are thereby fully available for the conception of the VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary program. This affirms the role of the city of Vienna as an information hub between the art scenes of the Western hemisphere and the Eastern and South-Eastern European regions. Both the city of Vienna and VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary offer the ideal conditions to support the development of the markets in these key regions of the art fair. In times of economic and cultural crises, the markets could provide new chances for artists from these regions.

With the decision for Vienna as the basis for their international activities for VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary, the two artistic directors would also like to emphasize the importance of the local art and gallery scenes and involve them in their program planning.

For Christina Steinbrecher, artistic director of VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary, a central topic is both the geopolitical and cultural political role of Vienna: “Departing from VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary’s clear-cut position, we strive to look beyond Eastern and Southeastern Europe. Equally as important as winning buyers from the key regions is the development of a high-quality artistic program for both art collectors and an expert audience from the art scene – curators, museum directors, and artists. As a significant art event, VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary should have an effect on the city well beyond the fair halls and be a true festival for exchange in the creative scene.”

“We want to accentuate the innovative aspect of VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary in an international comparison with the familiar art fair formats,” says Vita Zaman, artistic director of VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary, on the international discussion of art fairs. “VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary will assume a very distinct position and create an interesting network of galleries – from young and emerging to established – thereby questioning the role of contemporary art before the backdrop of a pluralistic aesthetic and its multifaceted geography. The participating galleries will present artists who work in diverse media, traditions, and different places and highlight their artistic as well as commercial value. With the visitors’ very different experiences with art in mind, we want to develop a multifaceted communication program where the exchange of knowledge takes center stage. Film, design, and music will fuse with novel forms of communication such as e-commerce, the social activities of collectors clubs, and contemporary fine arts.

“Building upon Vienna’s geographically central position, VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary can offer a new interpretation of the ‘East meets West’ idea by not only seeing ‘the East’ as Eastern and South-Eastern Europe but expanding this realm to Istanbul and even to the Middle East. And with ‘the West’ not only thinking about London or New York but also galleries from Texas and Los Angeles,” states Vita Zaman summarizing the planned enrichment of the art fair’s scope.

Biographies: Artistic direction team of VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary
Christina Steinbrecher was born in 1983 in Kazakhstan. She studied at Manchester University in Great Britain, where she graduated with a Master in Contemporary Art in 2007. In addition to her role as the artistic director of Art Moscow since 2009, she has been the curator and head of the Sputnik Art Foundation since 2010, held an executive function for the Innovation Prize of the National Centre for Contemporary Art, Moscow since 2011, and since the same year has been the artistic director of Moscow House of Artists. She also co-curated the exhibition “Unconditional Love” in the framework of the 53rd Venice Biennale and was a member of the curatorial team for the 3rd Moscow Biennale 2009.

Vita Zaman was born in 1976 in Lithuania. She studied Creative Curating at Goldsmiths College, University of London and photography at the Royal College of Art, London. Between 2002 and 2008, she founded and led IBID Projects in London and Vilnius prior to becoming the director of the renowned Pace Gallery’s dependance in Chelsea, New York in 2009, where she until 2011 established many contacts with the most important galleries in Europe and the USA as well as many young galleries around the world.

VIENNAFAIR The New Contemporary will take place from September 20 to 23, 2012, in Messe Wien, Hall A, Messeplatz 1, 1020 Vienna.

ANNOUNCEMENT: Another press conference will take place on Tuesday, June 19, 2012, at 10:00 am. We would be happy if you already reserve this date in your calendar.
You will also receive a special invitation for this occasion.

Vita Zaman Will Co-Direct Viennafair