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Federal Minister Gernot Blümel at the press conference on the cultural programme of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the EU
Federal Minister Gernot Blümel at the press conference on the cultural programme of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the EU
BKA/Andy Wenzel

Federal Minister Blümel: Works of Austrian art and culture presented on the European stage

Published 25 Jun 16:21

Cultural programme of the Austrian Presidency of the Council of the EU

“When Austria takes over the presidency of the Council of the European Union on 1 July, we can expect an intensive programme for the coming 6 months. This also applies to the areas of art and culture”, said Gernot Blümel, Federal Minister for the EU, Arts, Culture and Media, at a press conference on 25 June in Vienna's history of art museum (KHM). Together with Sabine Haag, General Director of the KHM-Museumsverband, Alexander Steinberger, Vice-Chairman of the Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra, and Jacqueline Kornmüller, Director of the Ganymed series, the minister presented the focal points of the Austrian Presidency’s cultural programme. This includes the European-level work programme, expert conferences in Austria as well as the cultural framework programme in Brussels.

At the top of the work programme agenda are the EU Work Plan for Culture as of 2019 as well as the Creative Europe 2021-2027 programme which supports European cultural and film sectors. The aim is to support the cultural diversity of Europe as well as the competitiveness of its cultural and creative sector. “Another focal point of the Austrian Presidency is the impact of digitalisation on Europe’s cultural, media and creative economies. The central question being how to guarantee in future our European identity in the digital world given the market dominance of globally acting American giants”, said Blümel. This is also the key question of the Challenging (the) Content conference, which takes place on 8-9 October in Vienna. The European Year of Cultural Heritage 2018 takes place under the motto “Sharing Heritage”. At the closing conference #EuropeForCulture on 6-7 December in Vienna experts will concentrate on cultural heritage.

“The Austrian Presidency of the Council of the European Union offers the unique opportunity to present our lively and diverse artistic and cultural landscape on the European stage. We want to use it to build bridges between tradition and innovation. Therefore, the cultural framework programme in Brussels will cover the entire bandwidth of Austrian art and culture: from classical to contemporary”, said the minister. In the second half of 2018 numerous small and a series of large cultural events will take place on the initiative of the Federal Chancellery and in cooperation with the Austrian Cultural Forum in Brussels.

The cultural framework programme in Brussels encompasses 17 large cultural events that offer a European platform for Austrian art and culture. The programme starts on 2 July with a musical greeting: The whole range of Austrian music will be played, either live or as a sound installation, in Brussels’ metro stations and in the EU institutions in Brussels and Strasbourg. The mobile miniature exhibition Museum in a Nutshell – Europe united in art presents masterpieces from all Austrian Federal Museums and delves into topics of European politics, society and history. “In the past as today, art is a connecting link between European values and European works. This idea of a united Europe that is rich in tradition is also the underlying concept of the Museum in a Nutshell," said the minister for culture.

The Vienna Philharmonic Orchestra will be playing a concert under the direction of guest conductor Herbert Blomstedt. The selection of musical pieces also builds a bridge, ranging from the creations of a composer from north Europe to the music of a famous representative of the Bohemian Romantic Era and the works of the Vienna King of Waltz. Under the title Ganymed goes Brussels, director Jacqueline Kornmüller and producer Peter Wolf present their award-winning theatre format Ganymed at the Royal Museum of Fine Arts in Brussels.

Official photos of this event will be published on the official Flickr channel (

All cultural events can be found in the calendar of events.

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