Art sponsoring project and exhibition of Verbund in cooperation with the photography class of the Vienna University of Applied Arts.

Exhibition opening and catalogue presentation
11 May 2009, 7 p.m.

Duration of exhibition
12 May through 21 May 2009, Künstlerhaus

A PIECE OF WATER marks the continuation of Verbund's more than 60-year tradition of sponsoring the fine arts, this time in cooperation with the photography class of the Vienna University of Applied Arts under the directorship of Univ.-Prof. Gabriele Rothemann. "The project emphasizes the company's art orientated philosophy and underlines the necessity of society supporting promising young artists even in times of economic difficulty," comments Dipl.-Ing. Dr. Herbert Schröfelbauer, Chairman of VERBUND-Austrian Hydro Power AG. The Hydropower subsidiary of Verbund was the project sponsor. The catalogue publication and the exhibition are Verbund's attempt of conveying the necessity of supporting young artists in Austria to a broad public.

The extremely open orientation of the photography class was met by the virtually free subject of WATER, allowing the students of the University of Applied Arts in Vienna to approach the subject from a multifarious artistic and philosophical perspective. The topic was intended to constitute a challenge that is both attractive and appropriate as well as increase awareness for water as an indispensable element for man and nature; at the same time, the preoccupation with "water" is intended to reflect the worldwide emphasis on this highly predominant subject.

"The enthusiasm of all students from all years has already manifested itself in the number of participating young artists, as well as, not least, in the enormous dedication regarding the implementation of an exhibition that is impressive both in terms of diversity and quality," Mag. Michael Amerer, Chairman of VERBUND-Austrian Hydro Power AG, explained the concept of the project.
"The excellent cooperation between the University of Applied Arts and Verbund has provided students of the photography course with the opportunity of presenting their work to the public in a top professional manner within the setting of an exhibition and even in the form of a catalogue. This type of sponsorship of young artists is an important milestone for the future of our students," states Gerald Bast, headmaster of the University of Applied Arts in Vienna.

"The students' work reveals a sharpened awareness for the vital significance of water in all areas of life, for the imbalance of scarcity and affluence, but also decisions regarding abstract ways of thinking" (Univ.-Prof. Gabriele Rothemann). The results of the work of the photography class at the University of Applied Arts in Vienna reflect the enormous diversity of this element, which allows for a whole range of angles and different perspectives. This can be seen both in the different approaches in terms of content and the wide range of techniques and methods used by the students in their treatment of the subject. Photographs, videos, sketches and installations were created all of which demonstrate a high artistic quality.

The catalogue A PIECE OF WATER is published by VERBUND-Austrian Hydro Power AG at the publishing house Mag. Johann Lehner Ges.m.b.H., 1160 Vienna (ISBN: 978-3-901749-82-7).