Creativity from Vienna to the World is an online project that includes lectures, a blog and an online exhibition. It connects aspects of design and women’s history, pedagogy, migration history and cultural transfer to trace the achievements of migrant women designers who moved to the United States from Central Europe in the first half of the twentieth century. More specifically, the project addresses how ideas related to design and pedagogy consolidated in Central Europe were developed by women designers who had successful second careers in the United States, such as Emmy Zweybrück-Prochaska, Hilda Jesser-Schmid, Vally Wieselthier and Lisl Weil. It also interrogates dissemination through travelling exhibitions such as that of Franz Čizek’s female dominated art class, which toured the USA in 1923/24, publications like Zweybrück-Prohaska’s Stencil Book (1937), pedagogical activities such as Erika Giovanna Klien’s teachings at the Dalton School, as well as the founding of successful businesses like Liane Zimbler’s architecture firm in Los Angeles. By shedding light on the transatlantic connections that represented an important aspect in the careers of many women designers, the project aims to establish an accessible, critical record of the modernisation and development of women-led design and pedagogic practice in the nexus of Austrian-American exchange.
Creativity from Vienna to the World is a collaborative online project led by Professor Megan Brandow-Faller (City University of New York) and Dr Julia Secklehner (Masaryk University, Brno), sponsored by an event grant from the Botstiber Institute for Austrian-American Studies (BIAAS) and supported by the Austrian Cultural Forum (Washington D.C.).