Book presentation
Erwin Polanc: 8630 Mariazell


Exhibition Camera Austria
19.9.2017, 6 pm
Language: German

Photographer Erwin Polanc in conversation with Emil Gruber (journalist, curator, photographer) and Christian Hoffelner (book designer).


8630 Mariazell

Fotohof edition, Salzburg, 2017.
With a contribution by Ulrich Tragatschnig and a conversation between Erwin Polanc and Christian Hoffelner (germ. /eng.).
120 pages, 29,5 × 22,5 cm, numerous colour illustrations
ISBN 978-3-902993-44-1

The focal point of my work is the (Austrian federal province) of Styria. I try and process or address many of the things I am interested in myself, or that concern me directly, through the choice of location so that the whole thing becomes more tangible for me, too. After my hometown of Neumarkt, a small rural community, and (the old mining town of) Eisenerz, a place shaped by industrial upheaval, I became particularly interested in Mariazell as a traditional place of pilgrimage. So, if you like, my work is generally about an exploration of provenance, of upheavals, of the consequences of industrial and socio-cultural change. In that sense I see Mariazell as a laboratory, as a topographically ideal type for the subject matter of pilgrimage per se. Through its morphology the town allows me to address issues relating to religion, pilgrimage, tourism, etc. Why do thousands of people go on a pilgrimage there? What are my expectations of such a place? How does it work? That in turn raises a whole range of questions for which there are no quick or simple answers – if any.
Erwin Polanc (from a conversation with Christian Hoffelner)


  • Spread: Erwin Polanc. 8630 Mariazell, 2017, pp. 68-69.

  • Spread: Erwin Polanc. 8630 Mariazell, 2017, pp. 80-81.

  • Spread: Erwin Polanc. 8630 Mariazell, 2017, pp. 84-85.

  • Spread: Erwin Polanc. 8630 Mariazell, 2017, pp. 92-93.

  • Spread: Erwin Polanc. 8630 Mariazell, 2017, pp. 96-97.