linda bilda


arbeite nie (never work)

The imperative "Arbeite Nie" (Never Work) is the title of Linda Bilda’s powerful and critical art project in Marienthal, a housing development in Gramatneusiedl. Her project creates a link between work as a theme, now universally associated with the global crisis, and the richly layered history of the labor movement, for which Marienthal stands as the site of an important study on unemployment.

Linda Bilda’s art project consists of two parts: an intervention in the neighborhood’s public space, and something she refers to as a "Plakazin" – a poster-magazine printed in large numbers and handed out for free. This richly illustrated publication full of interesting content is a platform for Linda Bilda’s programmatic stance on work, which she explores in texts and comic drawings.
Linda Bilda calls her intervention in the Marienthal neighborhood of Gramatneusiedl a "Raumgefüge," or spatial formation, thus blending performative with structural elements. She integrated this spatial formation into the current architecture to remind us of what is no longer there. For this purpose, Linda Bilda created a street map of the area that is categorized according to seven themes, representing her own "order of things." The map sends us on a hunt for historical clues. Similar to a dérive – the "aimless roaming" practiced by the Situationists – we are encouraged to experience this place in a new way. For each theme, which is marked on the street map by a different color, Linda Bilda designed signs, or emblems, that are mounted at certain local points of interest, where they bring history back to life.
(Silvia Eiblmayr)

In 2015, Linda Bilda installed three additional signs or “emblems” as an expansion of her tour through the historical town. The first sign marks the former child care facility, which was built by the factory owner. It stands not only for socio-political developments and emancipation, but also for the employer’s economic motivation for relying on the labor of women and mothers. The second concerns the importance of technological progress for public life and industrial production and is highlighted by the hydroelectric plant on the Fischa, which is still operational today. The third site is the war monument in Gramatneusiedl, which until now did not include the local communist resistance activists who had been executed by the Nazis.

In parallel to this, the artist organized a comic workshop for high school students of the Polytechnische Schule Himberg in cooperation with Public Art Lower Austria.