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May 2019

2019 artistic covering of Vienna’s Ringturm reaches for the stars

By Vienna’s Danube Canal, another summer with a touch of internaAional flair is just around the corner: Bulgaria’s Daniela Kostova is the artist behind the 12th wrapping of the Ringturm.

Over the past few days, work has started on the latest eye-catching design for the facade of the Ringturm – head office of the Vienna Insurance Group (VIG) – which will adorn the building in summer 2019. New York-based Bulgarian artist Daniela Kostova has been chosen to provide the 12th artistic covering of the historic office tower next to the Danube Canal. “The artistic covering of the Ringturm is the largest and most spectacular project that signifies our commitment to promoting culture and the arts. It also symbolises cross-border dialogue. Daniela Kostova is the latest addition to the impressive roll call of Central and East European artists who have designed the artistic wrapping of the Ringturm,” commented Günter Geyer, Chairman of the Managing Board of Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein, the main shareholder of the Vienna Insurance Group. Entitled Future Dreaming, the 4,000 square metre artwork (comprising a total of 30 printed netting sheets, each around 3m wide and up to 63m long) will be installed on the facade of the Ringturm over the next few weeks.

Daniela Kostova’s artistic wrapping of the Ringturm: Future Dreaming

On the side of the Ringturm facing the Danube Canal, a toddler is looking at us with alert eyes. She is dressed in a space suit. A white dove is landing on her helmet, its wings still spread. The bird, symbolising the dream of flight, features prominently in various emblems of space missions. The toddler’s empirical world is shaped by new encounters: even before she can walk, she is dreaming of the big, wide world. Her toy, a mobile with flying celestial bodies, is depicted on the back side of the building. It indicates a change in perspective: gazing at the Earth from far away, at the fragility of our planet, the environment in which the children of the future will live. Talking about her piece Daniela Kostova commented: “In my work I have repeatedly dealt with the question of what ‘safe play’ signifies in various cultural and social contexts. The site-specific display of this particular project adds another dimension to the subject. What interests me here is the wide angle through which we can take a look at the future of our children”.

The artist

Born in Sofia in 1974, Daniela Kostova is an interdisciplinary artist. She studied at the National Academy of Art in Sofia (Bulgaria) and the Rensselear Polytechnic Institute (RPI) in New York (USA). Kostova focuses on comparing and contrasting different cultural models, looking for the points where they overlap and the hybrid forms this gives rise to. She has displayed her work at numerous institutions using a range of exhibition formats, including at Queens Museum of Art in New York, the Institute of Contemporary Art in Sofia, Kunsthalle Wien in the Austrian capital, Geneva’s Centre d’art Contemporain and the Fridericianum in Kassel. Her exhibitions have been reviewed by the likes of The New York Times, Brooklyn Rail, Flash Art International and Art in America.

She has received a number of scholarships, including travel scholarships from the New York Foundation for the Arts (NYFA), the American Foundation for Bulgaria and the European Cultural Foundation, as well as an ArtsLink Residency fellowship at the Cleveland Institute of Art in Ohio. Kostova also has various prizes to her name, including the 2011 Unlimited award for contemporary Bulgarian art. She is co-founder of the interdisciplinary collective Bulgarian Collaborative, Director of Curatorial Projects at the Radiator Gallery, a mentor of NYFA’s Immigrant Artist Program and a board member for the CEC ArtsLink exchange programme. 2

Dedicated to supporting the arts in Austria and Europe

Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein is committed to promoting cross-border cultural dialogue and backing social causes. Supporting a range of art projects in Austria and abroad as well as young artists is a leading priority for VIG’s main shareholder. The artistic covering of the Ringturm is a high-profile symbol of this philosophy. Several well-known Austrian artists have designed the Ringturm wrapping, including Gottfried Helnwein and Arnulf Rainer. Since 2012 artists from Eastern Europe have been invited to create images for the artistic covering.

Artistic wrapping of the Ringturm, 2006-2019

2019 Daniela Kostova Future Dreaming Bulgaria

2018 Gottfried Helnwein I saw this Austria

2017 Mihael Milunović Vision Serbia

2016 Ivan Exner Unburdened Czech Republic

2015 Tanja Deman Summer Pleasures Croatia

2014 Arnulf Rainer Veil of Agnes Austria

2013 Dorota Sadovská Ties Slovakia

2012 László Fehér Society Hungary

2011 Xenia Hausner A Sense of Family Austria

2008 Hubert Schmalix Tower in Blossom Austria

2007 Robert Hammerstiel Tower of Life Austria

2006 Christian Ludwig Attersee Don Giovanni Austria

Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein is the main shareholder of the Vienna Insurance Group (VIG) and supports the Group’s cultural and social activities, with a focus on enhancing cross-border, intercultural exchange. There is also an emphasis on creating an environment in which individual cultures can thrive. Partnerships and initiatives are geared towards supporting the activities of social organisations, especially in the Central and Eastern European countries in which the Vienna Insurance Group has a presence.

If you have any questions, please contact:

Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein

Public Relations

Schottenring 30, 1010 Vienna

Romy Schrammel

Phone: +43 (0)50 350-21224

Fax: +43 (0)50 350 99 21224


Reproduction rights: © Wiener Städtische Versicherungsverein/Daniela Kostova