Graz (A) * 2003 * European Cultural Capital Graz 03, sinnlos * 8 weeks

On the occasion of the European Cultural Capital Graz 2003, WochenKlausur developed a year-long program of activities for older people with severe mental disabilities. The object was to offer them opportunities for a change of their daily routine inside the home.

The Kainbach Nursing Home houses approximately 600 people with severe mental disabilities. Many of them are of a relatively advanced age and have no variety in their everyday lives: no one visits them and they do not go on outings with relatives – in other words they never leave the care facility. The home’s personnel is working at limit and cannot take on any further tasks.

Thus the artist group developed a year-long program that makes it possible for the facility’s residents to engage in activities outside of the home. The client’s varied interests, and most of all their specific disabilities and limitations, made it necessary to develop a tailor-made program adapted to the individual abilities, possibilities and difficulties of the clients.

The group elaborated a selection of activities that was as wide-ranging as possible: there were hardly any limits on the diversity of conceivable ideas.

Numerous businesses, institutions, associations and private individuals were asked if they could devote one day per year to engaging in activities with a small group of residents from the nursing home. More than fifty of these organizations and people agreed to participate. Frequently they requested assistance in planning the actual activities. Together with WochenKlausur, a different event was planned for every week between May 2003 and May 2004. Thus it was possible to work out a program for an entire calendar year.


The Aquarium and Terrarium Association organized a picnic by the pond at a local nature preserve and analyzed water quality and identified fish and frog species with the guests
The Styrian Aviation Association showed a group from Kainbach around the hanger and let them try out the flight simulator before taking of with them for a flight over Graz
The soccer team GAK showed visitors around the field and dressing rooms before inviting them to a game against Salzburg
At the Zotter chocolate factory the guests dreamed up new chocolate delights after a tour of the factory
In the studio of the Werkstadt Graz, electroacoustic entries for the Electronic Culture Marathon Medal 2003 were recorded
In 2004, WochenKlausur received the International Prize for Sociopolitical Culture and Art Projects ( Using the prize money, it was possible to organize the program for a further year. Many of the participating institutions then agreed to devote one day in every year to the clients from Kainbach and offer them appropriate activities.
Padma Bhatt, Barbara Dirnberger, Claudia Eipeldauer, Petra Kickenweitz, Martina Reuter, Wolfgang Zinggl (Konzept: Pascale Jeannée)