At this festival, young adults learn to love themselves

“My Body, My Rules” – My body, my rules: This is the motto until Sunday, November 28th, the Skin Festival instead – because of the lockdown, not in the Vienna Museum Quarter as planned, but virtually. In talks, concerts, workshops and parties, marginalized communities should find a platform, prejudices broken down and new perspectives gained.

Because topics such as sex and gender, queerness and body positivity are becoming increasingly important for young people, especially during the pandemic, explains Corinne Eckenstein, artistic director of Dschungel Wien Theaterhaus for young audiences and curator of the festival.

The idea for the festival came about during the last lockdown. “The decisive factor was the exclusion, discrimination and violence against young people, which increased during the pandemic,” reports the curator. The program is aimed at a young adult audience between 15 and 23 years of age.

Body image

The Corona crisis resulted in adolescents and young adults spending a lot of time with themselves – time with friends decreased, time on social media such as Tiktok increased dramatically. As a result, many developed eating disorders and a negative body image, studies have shown. “Instead of real experience in the peer group, there was filtered reality. That does something to self-perception,” observed Eckenstein. “We always draw our identity from the comparison with others. But what if I do not correspond to these images and do not want to correspond?”

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