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Art of Democracy

A Festival celebrating Contemporary Fine Art, Participation and Society

Art is inevitably dialogue. It might provoke, appear strange, even inaccessible. Art is Democracy.

Helfried Carl, Founder of European Capital of Democracy

Even the smallest action and the quietest word may open up new procedures for implementing democracy in our everyday lives.

Oliver Hangl, performance/media artist, curator, urban activist

To open doors for art and political discourse: That is what I want. What I do is called “Art of Democracy Festival”

Dunja Ganser, Senior Consultant and Cultural Manager

A 360 degree point of view and sense of listening – that is Democracy.

Gerd Kühr, Composer and Conductor.


This festival was born out of our conviction that art is a seismograph of past and present social processes. Bound by neither geography, nor language, artists can reflect on what is happening right now, and on what moves all of us. This often allows them to foretell what the future will bring and to build bridges where developments in society have opened an abyss.

The festival will be an integral part of the yearly programmes in the annually designated European Capitals of Democracy (ECoD).

Every festival will contain a walk-in art installation that will serve various purposes and characterise a point where art meets society – in equal measure a meeting place, an event, an art venue and a sensory experience. Interventions, performances, community projects, a residency programme, and a project information centre that doubles as an exhibition place will be integral parts of the festival days.


(c) Boris Nemeth

I cannot imagine the future of Democracy without critical thinking. Art can change the way we look at things. To provoke our minds and change the stereotypes of thinking.

Juraj Čarný, Curator

Art allows us a shared experience, to perceive contradictions and to enter a conversation about meaning and relevance. Obviously, talking to each other is a core requirement for a successful democracy.

Art of Democracy, therefore, strengthens democratic pillars: The freedom of personal expression, and the freedom of artistic expression!

Art of Democracy on Tour

Art of Democracy is already on tour. Various art projects will showcase our initiative together with artists and partner institutions. The first stop was in Graz, Austria, in September 2022: we teamed up with the Festival Styriarte and the artist Oliver Hangl.

In his urban interventions Austrian artist Oliver Hangl confronts the human being and the environment, and pushes the boundaries between physical and psychological spaces, playfully connecting both worlds. His Post-It’s appeared throughout the Graz, where Styriarte`s Charity Concert took place, with quotes related to what challenges Democracy today.

Festival Programme 2022 - 2024

July 8

September 2022

16 – 18 September 2022  Graz, Austria – Art of Democracy on Tour Urban intervention by the artist Oliver Hangl and 18 September, 8pm Charity Concert for Ukraine, Minoritensaal
January 1

From September 2023 until August 2024

Multimedia Art and online programme/activities throughout the year

September 1

September 2023

A Festival Opening Show as part of the Opening Ceremonies of “European Capital of Democracy”

March 21

Spring 2024

The Festival Programme will run between 10 – 15 days

  • Walk-in Art Installation – an Agora inspired meeting place, an art and education venue, and a sensory experience
  • 10 – 20 international and local artists participating
  • 20 – 30 art projects, performances, exhibitions, participatory art projects
  • poster and postcard communication projects for shop windows and public spaces
  • Educational projects
  • Residencies
  • Workshops
  • Collaborations with local and international art institutions
  • Kiosk for art projects, book shop, workshops and info point


For the Festival’s programme we will cooperate with artists active in public art, context sensitive art, social design and activism:

Ilona Németh /SK/, Dan Perjovschi /RO/, Oliver Hangl /A/, Aldo Giannotti /A/, San Keller /CH/, Andreas Heusser /CH/, Kateřina Šedá /CZ/, Anna Witt /D/, Jeauk Lukas Kang /KOR/, Migrantas.org /D-ARG/, Stano Masár /SK/, Luchezar Boyadjiev /BGR/

We are currently working on the artists’ and projects’ selection.

Curated by Juraj Čarný

He was president of AICA Slovakia, vice-president of AICA International, the founding director of Kunsthalle Bratislava, the founding editor-in-chief of Flash Art – Czech and Slovak edition, director of SPACE gallery, Billboart Gallery Europe, Crazycurators Biennale. He is editor-in-chief of Jazdec (Rider) art magazine, teacher at Academy of Fine Arts in Bratislava and Faculty of Art, Jan Evangelista Purkyně University at Ústí nad Labem, Czech Republic.