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BIO. Natalie Deewan (*1978 in Vienna, Austria, studied French & philosophy in Vienna & Paris) works as artist with signs of different kinds. She is subvertising signs in the urban, rural & virtual space (Vienna vacancy anagrams; Graffiti Recycling & Coded Quotes; Pixendorf is spelled out) & finds Language Solutions all along the way. She is dealing in Pure, Real, Applied & Collective Literature (with a faible for lipograms & montage), Typography (Heterotypia Font Family) & deesign. In 2018, she teamed up with native signer Atilla Gum for bilingual talks involving sign language. Since 2005, she runs a curry restaurant (Der Wiener Deewan) on a pay-as-you-wish basis, together with Afzaal Deewan.

Photos: © Natalie Deewan  

Internet war gestern (Internet was yesterday) / Leerstandsanagramm (vacancy anagram) (2020)
Installation in public space

A vacant garage in Vienna's 16th district opens its 2500m2 space for interim use by the neighbourhood, including greening of façades, urban gardening, beekeeping, yoga classes, workshops for children, etc. The initiators of "GARAGE GRANDE" approached me for the transformation of the now defunct sign in classic red lettering on the formerly communal building: "GARAGE DER STADT WIEN ERRICHTET IN DEN JAHREN 1973-1974".

Using the complete set of letters, including the dash between the years (for the Ä), I produced an anagram which was mounted on all 3 sides of the building: INTERNET WAR GESTERN (= internet was yesterday, "slogan") – DIE DACHGÄRTEN (= the rooftop gardens, "title") – HIRE A DJ 11 34 77 99 ("ad").

This vacancy anagram is the 8th in a series started in 2017 that was carried out in Vienna, half of which are still visible / readable today. 23 examples of vacancy anagrams are published in the postcard booklet "Nach Geschäftsschluss. Wiener Leerstandsanagramme" (2017).

Photos: © Natalie Deewan

Finkenschieber (Finches' abacus) - a Statistical Sculpture (2020)

The Finches' abacus is a Statistical Sculpture on the Carinthian Plebiscite of 1920. It consists of 100 birds made from recycled plastic in the Carinthian colours red, white and yellow (also the colours of the goldfinch) that sit on 10 metal bars in 2 wooden frames, reminding of an abacus. They visualize the results of the referendum in 10 communes of Southern Carinthia. Each finch represents 10 % of the votes, e.g. 6 finches sitting on the Austrian side vs. 4 finches sitting on the Yugoslavian side visualise the relation of approx. 60 : 40 % of the votes. This abacus draws upon the historic Vienna method of Pictorial Statistics, extends it into an interactive tool in 3D and ironizes it at the same time with the use of „100 mixed individuals“. Those unique birds were manufactured by Vahida Ramujkić and Tijana Cvetković of the plastic recycling cooperative Minipogon in Belgrade, who uses open source technology, within the international Precious Plastic movement, to build their machines.

Photos: © Natalie Deewan

Neue Wiener Linien – Graffiti recycling & Coded quotes (2019)
Installation in public space; font

During 3 months, i spent many evenings in a youth center in 5th district trying to get kids involved in a graffiti recycling project. Kids were uninterested in collecting = photographing signs on the streets, but were willing to type some words or sentences with this peculiar font on site. This new member of the heterotypia font family assembles 189 informal graphic signs from Viennese walls of 2018/19, each assigned to a letter on the typekey, which allows to decode the written messages. A selection of these „Coded Quotes“ incl. typekey was applied then with adhesive foil on 10 bus stop walls around the youth center and remained there for around 9 months. While some of these large scale applications displayed only few words, others had a sentence translated in 3 languages: Turkish/German/English or Macedonian/German/Hungarian, like modern-day Rosetta stops. The title refers to the public transport company “Wiener Linien“ (= Vienna lines).


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