The Goddess Books

The Goddess Books form an important communicative instrument combining the scientific, artistic, and regional dimensions of this project. The small, beautifully designed books support the project in making its results and archeological finds known to a broad public in Lower Austria. The project’s aim is to strengthen women’s self-awareness with regard to their significance and performance within a regional economy. The prehistoric figurines are brought back into play as symbols of female identification. Each of the books is dedicated to one of the prehistoric figures found in Lower Austria: the Venus of Willendorf, the Venus of Galgenberg, the Venus of Falkenstein as well as an important neighbor, the Venus of Dolní Věstonice from Moravia/CZ.

Highly qualified archeologists who specialize in these figurines or, in the case of the figurines from Galgenberg and Falkenstein, even unearthed them, write informative texts about the small sculptures (Walpurga Antl-Weiser, Christine Neugebauer-Maresch, Martin Oliva). Each book features an interview with a woman from the region about her life, her role, and her possibilities, which links the prehistoric figurines with the reality of women today. In addition, there is a short text on the cultural-historical and psychological significance of the mother, woman, or daughter. The books are designed by the French-Chilean artist Federica Matta, who animates the group of figurines in her drawings and makes them appear as if in an imaginary theater.