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Angelo Soliman : ein Afrikaner in Wien ;…

Angelo Soliman : ein Afrikaner in Wien ; [376. Sonderausstellung des… (edition 2011)

by Philipp Blom (Editor)

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Title:Angelo Soliman : ein Afrikaner in Wien ; [376. Sonderausstellung des Wien-Museums, Wien-Museum 29. September 2011 bis 29. Jänner 2012]
Authors:Philipp Blom (Editor)
Info:Wien Brandstätter Verlag 2011
Collections:Your library, Biography, Social History, Modern Europe, Read, Exhibition catalogue
Tags:de, Vienna, Austria, Wienmuseum, Angelo Soliman, slavery, Kaffeemohr, Africa, 18th century, slave trade

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Angelo Soliman : ein Afrikaner in Wien ; [376. Sonderausstellung des Wien-Museums, Wien-Museum 29. September 2011 bis 29. Jänner 2012] by Philipp Blom (Editor)



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Angelo Soliman was an African slave who was trained as a fashion accessory for the nobility: Serving a cup of coffee in style. Via Southern Italy, he was a servant first of Count Lobkowitz and later Liechtenstein. Privileged and limited at the same time. he was quite successful and even influential, becoming a Freemason, marrying a woman of Dutch origin and acquiring a house extra muros. Not a bad life for an African slave! Alas, the Austrian Emperor had no respect of his black skin. Despite the protestations of his daughter, Soliman's body was skinned and a taxidermised exhibit of an African wild man complete with feathers created (which the cultured servant Soliman never was) and exhibited in the natural history collection for a few years (until the new director removed the strange item from public display. He did not, however, bury the remains. A fire during the 1848 revolution destroyed Soliman's skin and purged the museum's black stain.

Both the exhibition in the Wien Museum and its catalogue marvelously use the biography of Soliman to present larger concepts of 18th century society, e.g. the less well-known north-south African slave trade (where the majority of slaves ended up in the Ottoman Empire), the role of black servants as status symbols and fashion accessories (a human specimen among the Baroque ménagerie) to fascinating details such as one had to be a citizen of Vienna to acquire property intra muros. The catalogue is exceptionally well curated, with very little overlap, good coordination among the different authors and beautifully illustrated. Highly recommended. ( )
1 vote jcbrunner | Nov 4, 2012 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Blom, PhilippEditorprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Appiah, Kwame AnthonyContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Blom, PhilippContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Bono, SalvatoreContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Buckley, VeronicaContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Eckert, AndreasContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Kos, WolfgangEditor and authormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Sauer, WalterContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Trojanow, IlijaContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Wolf, RüdigerContributormain authorall editionsconfirmed
Plankensteiner, BarbaraChapter notes and object descriptionssecondary authorall editionsconfirmed
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