Confronting Borders Old and New: An Interview With Josef Koudelka

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Prague, negative August 1968; print 1990. Image courtesy of © Josef Koudelka/Magnum Photos

I grew up behind the Iron Curtain, like many people in Eastern and Central Europe. All my life I wanted to go behind the Wall, to go on the other side. But in fact I never saw the Wall. It was difficult to get close, they wouldn’t let us. To try to get close meant that you are trying to escape. But in spite of that the Wall was present all the time in my mind. I wanted to get out of the cage, to see what was on the other side. I knew that what they were telling us was not true, that they were trying to manipulate us. I wanted to learn for myself what the truth is.

Exiles, 1968, Wall… Josef Koudelka’s work makes borders visible, while his personal story of a nomad, based upon his work and views. He has been crossing many borders, challenging the ‘Old World’ by that. Which role does his testimony of isolation and communication play in these days?

Read the whole interview here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/sylvia-sukop/confronting-borders-old-and-new_b_6891466.html

Mayor of Wolfsthal speaks Slovak

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aktualne.atlas.sk: Aren’t you afraid that Wolfsthal will change to a Slovak village – that there will be more Slovaks than Austrians?

Gerhard Schödinger: Not at all. Firstly, we are not planning any further big development projects, secondly, the citizenship state in one’s passport is of second-range importance to me. People living here are simply Wolfsthal people to me and therefore members of the community.

I always tell the skeptics that we all have the same visions on how to live well. So where’s the problem? And according to this rule we behave in Wolfsthal and building the infrastructure testifies this. We’re glad that life came to the community together with young families.

 

An interview with Wolfsthal’s mayor Gerhard Schödinger about Wolfsthal’s development, its focus on middle class and young families, about relationship to Bratislava or Vienna and about details of cooperation between villages and city parts.

Read more in Slovak: http://aktualne.atlas.sk/starosta-wolfstahlu-slovakom-sme-povedali-aby-sa-zdravili/slovensko/spolocnost/