The village of Bildein saw their their geographic position directly on the border with Hungary not only as an opportunity to base their identity upon, but also as a main characteristics to foster tourism in this village with altogether less than 350 citizens (2011). One of their activities is ‘Grenzerfahrungsweg,’ /to be roughly translated as ‘walk of border experience’/ focused on a reflection of what a border means through specific stations, introducing also WWII and Iron Curtain. They offer a variety of activities for tourists, where they also do not forget to introduce local (transborder) cuisine.
In their projects, they collaborate also with neighboring villages in Hungary.
Read more about the walk here (website in German): http://www.bildein.at/grenzerfahrungsweg/
Bildein provides a rich example of how can a place (self-)define the notion of a border. Which kind of vocabulary connected to the main concept of ‘border’ is being created by their own approach? How is their own positioning affected by the distance to a bigger city/town?
in German: Pressburgerbahn, Lokalbahn Wien-Pressburg (L.W.P.),
in Hungarian: Pozsony Országhatárszeli Helyiérdekú Villamos Vasút (P.O.H.É.V.),
in Slovak: Elektrická lokálna železnica Bratislava- krajinská hranica (BKH), colloquialism: Viedenská električka
was a direct train connection of Vienna and Pressburg (after 1919 Bratislava) which officially begun to operate to on February 5th 1914. The original route of 69,1 kilometres lead via Schwechat, Hainburg and Wolfsthal as well as through suburbs of that time and nowadays a city part of Petržalka / Pozsonyligetfalu / Engerau directly into the center of Bratislava. This route is today followed by the S7 line of the Viennese S-Bahn which ends at Wolfsthal.
Old Pressburg citizens remembered buying fruit and vegetables at Naschmarkt, where they could also meet sellers from Záhorie which brought their good on carriages via Marchegg.
Wikipedia article available both in German and Slovak (and Czech):
fb fanpage, mostly in Slovak, with regular updates on restoration of the train, its stops, etc:https://www.facebook.com/viedenskaelektricka?fref=ts
An exhibition dedicated to the 25th anniversary of the Fall of the Iron Curtain, examining the development of Kittsee and ‘the greater space of Bratislava’ in 1948 – 1989. The exhibition presents mainly political and historical events connected with the given time through panels with photographs and objects. Examples of daily life in Austria or former Czechoslovakia are also present on this exhibition.
For the upcoming art project, SK/AT, the exhibition provides material and information to challenge what we know about ‘the other’ side, what might the possible stereotypes and blind spots and how might be these connected to the way we learned history.
Curator: Mag. phil. Benedikt Wallner
open June 14th – October 17th 2014
weekends (Sat, Sun) 10 – 18
or open for groups with guided tours (requires pre-registration)
Short description (in German): http://www.actioner.de/veranstaltungen-archiv/814599/ausstellung-grenzfalle-als-vor-kittsee-der-vorhang-fiel
Short press release (Slovak): http://www.seredonline.sk/clanky/-grenzfalle-ked-pred-kittsee-spadla-opona-/