Le Meridien

Le Méridien Talk Series in Vienna

Illy Art in orbit - the remarkable espresso cup chandelier, designed by artists including Julian Schnabel, David Byrne, Francis Ford Coppola and LM100™ member :mentalKLINIK

The chandelier comprises 300 illy art espresso cups

Truth or lies? Pertinent questions raised at Le Méridien's panel discussion

The stage is set for the talk

The Directors of ViennaFair, Vita Zaman and Christina Steinbrecher with Gabriela M. Benz, General Manager of Le Mérdien Vienna

Candida Gertler, Director of Outset Contemporary Art Fund, introduces the evening

Christian Holler, editor of the contemporary art magazine, Springerin, chairs the debate

The provocative discussion explored how individual realities are constructed in an age flooded with information

Carsten Holler and David Rych in dialogue

Artist David Rych gets his point across

The panel, from left to right: Anne Hardy, David Rych, Sabine Folie, Carsten Holler, Jeanette Pacher

Guests retire to the bar for drinks and canapés

Post panel discussion drinks

Illy Art in orbit - the remarkable espresso cup chandelier, designed by artists including Julian Schnabel, David Byrne, Francis Ford Coppola and LM100™ member :mentalKLINIK

Vienna’s almost insouciant blending of modern and historical is aptly expressed at the city’s Le Méridien Vienna. Its classic, haute imperial exterior opens into a sleek and contemporary lobby that could easily do double duty as one of Vienna’s many ultra-modern art spaces. This unusual juxtaposition of old and new formed the ideal backdrop for the latest Outset Le Méridien Talk Series that was held during September’s VIENNAFAIR, the city’s annual contemporary art fair.

Given the role of photography and its derivative forms in recent current affairs, the weighty topic – ‘Truth or lies? Aesthetic and Documentary Strategies in Contemporary Culture’ – was the basis for a timely panel discussion. The debate was chaired by Christian Holler, editor of the contemporary art magazine, Springerin, and it brought to the stage a powerhouse panel that included the artists Anne Hardy and David Rych, alongside Sabine Folie, artistic and managing director of the Generali Foundation in Vienna, and Jeanette Pacher, curator at the Secession gallery.

For the audience, a lively cross section of Vienna’s art mavens and hipsters, it was a chance to segue from the day’s gallery viewings to participate in an intense and often provocative discussion about how individual realities are constructed in an age flooded with information.

Later, guests enjoyed cocktails and canapés prepared by Le Méridien’s crack food and beverage team. For many, this was also a golden opportunity to tour the hotel’s extensive, quirky art collection scattered throughout the public corridors, spaces and lobby. A highlight of the collection was the dazzling chandelier comprised of 300 illy art espresso cups, designed by celebrated artists including Julian Schnabel, David Byrne, Francis Ford Coppola and :mentalKLINIK, an LM100™ member.

An unforgettable satellite event was Anne Hardy’s moving solo show, alongside the presentation of her new monograph, at Secession, Le Méridien Vienna’s Unlock Art partner. For Le Méridien, it was a perfect expression of its support for the arts and Hardy’s unique visual language. The new monograph, in particular, was designed in close collaboration with London graphics team Åbäke.

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Hotel

Le Méridien Vienna

Opernring 13, Vienna 1010, Austria (43)(1) 588900

About Le Méridien

When Starwood Hotels acquired Le Méridien in 2005, it immediately set about injecting the group’s French heritage with a jolt of cultural modernity. With more than 100 properties in 50 countries worldwide, the project was ambitious, but with creative input from Le Méridien’s cultural curator Jérôme Sans, the result is an intelligent synthesis of individually distinct properties within their respective cultural settings. Le Méridien Hotels & Resorts have been transformed into staging areas for contemporary artworks by both established and up-and-coming artists and through partnerships with local cultural institutions, the group has forged a place for itself at the core of the art world. Via the Unlock Art™ programme, guests’ key cards designed by LM100™ members are literally a complimentary ticket to a city’s leading art forums. By any measure, the group’s elevation of the quotidian hotel experience into a cultural one is inspirational.