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Sabine Bitter & Helmut Weber

Since 1993, Vancouver and Vienna based artists Sabine Bitter and Helmut Weber have worked on projects addressing cities, architecture, and the politics of representation and of space. Mainly working in the media of photography and video their research-oriented practice engages with specific moments and logics of the global-urban change as they take shape in neighborhoods, architecture, and everyday life. Since 2004 members of the cultural collective Urban Subjects US (Bitter/Derksen/Weber).
Recent projects and exhibitions include 2021: “Education Shock”, HKW Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; “Spaces of No Control”, Austrian Cultural Forum, New York. 2019: “Making Ruins”, Republic Gallery, Vancouver; 2018: “Camera Austria International”, Museum der Moderne, Salzburg; “Werkschau XXIII”, Fotogalerie Wien, Vienna; “Structures of Thought”, Gallery Structura, Sofia; “The Island is What the Sea Surrounds”, Valetta, Malta.2017: “STRETCHING THE BOUNDARIES”, FLUCA: Austrian Cultural Pavilion, Plovdiv, Bulgaria; “Phantastischer Kapitalismus”, Gallery GPLcontemporary, Vienna; “As a text differs from a book, an image differs from an archive”, Mackey Garage Top, MAK Center Los Angeles; “The Vienna Model. Housing for the 21st Century City”, Museum of Vancouver; “Here & Elsewhere – Nothing to be done”, Sarajevo. 2016: “What is left?”, frei_raum Q21,MuseumsQuartier Vienna. 2015: “New Conjunctions and Intersections”, United Nations Headquarters, New York;“Through a Window: Visual Art and SFU 1965-2015”, Teck Gallery, Vancouver; “Informal Paths”, MAXXI National Museum of XXI Century Arts, Rome. 2014: “Punctum”, Kunstverein Salzburg, Salzburg, Austria; “Archives, Re-Assemblances and Surveys”, Klovicevi dvori Gallery, Zagreb, Croatia. 2013: “Tensta Museum: Reports from New Sweden”, Tensta Konsthall, Stockholm, Sweden; “Front, Field, Line, Plane – Researching the Militant Image”, Kunstraum der Leuphana Universität Lüneburg; “Self Made Urbanism Rome”, NGBK Berlin; “The Vienna Model”, Austrian Cultural Forum New York. 2012: “TIME, PLACE, AND THE CAMERA: PHOTOGRAPHS AT WORK | Gjon Mili”, Kosova Art Gallery, Prishtina, Kosovo; “Our Haus”, Austrian Cultural Forum New York; “Autogestion, or Henri Lefebvre in New Belgrade”, The Power Plant Contemporary Art Gallery, Toronto; “Global Prayers”, Haus der Kulturen der Welt, Berlin; “Envisioning Buildings”, MAK, Vienna; “the Urban Cultures of Global Prayers”, Camera Austria, Graz; NGBK, Berlin. 2011: “We: Vancouver”, Vancouver Artgallery; “Communitas, The Unrepresentable Community”, Camera Austria, Graz.


Urban Subjects

Urban Subjects is a cultural research collective formed in 2004 by Sabine Bitter, Jeff Derksen, and Helmut Weber, based in Vancouver, Canada and Vienna, Austria. Together they develop interdisciplinary artistic projects focusing on global-urban issues, the texture of cities, and on civic imaginations. Urban Subjects do not work on a consensus model.

Amongst others, they have organized the exhibition Not Sheep: New Urban Enclosures and Commons at Artspeak, Vancouver, in 2006 and participated in the conference Contrapolis; or Creativity and Enclosures in the Cities at Poortgebouw and NAI, Rotterdam organized by Marina Vishmidt, Jan van Eyck Academy, in 2008. They have collaborated with Vancouver Flying University on a public program regarding housing in Vancouver.
In 2009 they devised and edited the book Autogestion, or Henri Lefebvre in New Belgrade, with a previously unpublished manuscript by Lefebvre (Fillip/Sternberg Press, 2009) and collaboratively produced Momentarily: Learning from Mega-events (Western Front, 2011) with Bik Van der Pol and Alissa Firth-Eagland.
For WE: Vancouver at the Vancouver Art Gallery they wrote a manifesto concerning the historical endurance of the political imagination of revolution, a Manifesto for the Poetry of the Future, with geographer Neil Smith.
They worked on the project Filling the Weak Points regarding autogestion and “researching the militant image” in cooperation with Kunstraum of Leuphana University Lüneburg and as artists in residence at the Leuphana Arts Program in 2012/2013.
In 2014, they curated the exhibition The Militant Image – Picturing What Is Already Going On with Camera Austria, Graz, and conducted the workshop Researching the Militant Image as part of steirische herbst Academy 2014. Accompanied by the publication, The Militant Image Reader in 2015 by Edition Camera Austria.
In July 2015, they held a research residency at the EXPO in Milano, Italy 2015, which led to the photoessay States
of no exception, Expo 2015 in Milano, for Mega-Event Cities, Public 53, Toronto, in 2016.
In 2017 they realised The Vienna Model in Vancouver – the exhibition “The Vienna Model: Housing for the 21st Century was brought to Vancouver on the initiative of Sabine Bitter and Jeff Derksen (Urban Subjects) at MOV, Museum of Vancouver, and framed by various events, lectures, and debates amongst others at Western Front, Simon Fraser University, and City Hall, Department for Housing, Vancouver.
They have been guest editors of Sincerity in Camera Austria Issue 139. As well they contributed to the exhibition Contentious Objects/Ashamed Subjects at Galleria del Progetto, Politecnico di Milano, Italy.
In 2019 they curated the exhibition It’s Never Too Late to Speculate at fluc, Vienna. Also they realized an installation and magazine publication We Hope this Does Not Make Us Sad: Architecture and Design in the Plutocratic Age as part of halfway, a research project by Christian Teckert, Christina Nägele, and Heidi Pretterhofer On Spatializing Urban Conditions, Vienna, Austria.

Recently they were are engaged in the Graz 2020 project The City and the Good Life curating the exhibition If Time is Still Alive: Counter-Temporalities and Public Time in May 2021 in collaboration with Camera Austria, Graz. In fall 2021 they joined the Forum Freies Theater (FFT) Düsseldorf city laboratory project Place Internationale, The 73 Days of the Commune at Planwerkstatt 378 with From Necessity and Love: Trajectories of Communal Possibilities.


See more about Urban Subjects`works on their new website: