In the autumn of 2008 the Vienna Café project will host a major two-day international conference at the Victoria and Albert Museum and Royal College of Art, entitled The Viennese Café as an Urban Site of Cultural Exchange.
The Viennese Café as an Urban Site of Cultural Exchange
London on October 17th and 18th 2008.
As today, the cafés of fin-de-siècle Vienna were an important component of modern city life, an extension of both home and workplace. Cafés were as much to do with intellectual and social interaction as with procuring refreshment. This conference will focus on the complexities of the Viennese café as an urban space in order to better understand wider questions about Viennese modernism. Through its focus on the café, the conference aims to redefine our understanding not only of the arts in Vienna, but also of modernity more generally.
The conference encourages a cross-disciplinary approach to subjects and welcomes proposals for papers from scholars and practitioners in any field.
Possible topics include, but are not restricted to:
The complex inter-relationships between urban modernity and artistic modernism in relation to the Viennese café.
The Viennese café as a liminal space: public and private, 'high' and 'low' culture.
The café as a site for consumption: coffee and commerce.
Contrasts and comparisons between the Viennese café and the café cultures of other world cities.
The café as a site for performance.
The café as a designed space: interrelations between modern design, society and fashion.
The Viennese Café and fin-de-siècle Research Project is funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC) and is based at the Royal College of Art and Birkbeck, University of London.