For many years, Karin Rick has been writing about love, sex and power, and is Austria’s best-known author of erotic literature. Her novels transcend sexual permissiveness with deep feelings. She graduated from the Translators Institutes in Vienna and Paris, majoring in Communications and Art History, then taught at Ecole des Mines in Nancy, France, and studied in Belgium and Spain. In Vienna, she organized numerous events on topics such as female aesthetics, gender differences, art history and French literature. Among these, the international symposium Female Sexuality and Creativity in Psychoanalysis and Literature at the University of Applied Arts, from which her first publication, a theoretical volume, Sexuality, Women and Art stems. This was followed by the conference Women, Violence, Pornography at the University of Vienna, and later, three days of French literature at a Vienna theater (Schauspielhaus) La vie est un roman (“Life is a Novel”). At this event, contemporary French authors discussed the entanglements of life and fiction. Karin Rick has translated novels of Hélène Cixous and Rachid Mimouni, essays by Robbe-Grillet, and short stories by Leslea Newman and Shere Hite into German. The female protagonists in her novels, short stories, and theoretical works transcend conventional images of femininity and exalt the pleasure principle above the female victim role – living out their sexual freedom with great intimacy. Many of the main characters in her novels lead the readers into a fantasy universe of erotic staging. Her main works are the theoretical volume Sexuality, Women and Art the novels Böse Spiele, Cote d’Azur, Sex ist die Antwort, Wilde Liebe, Chaosgirl, the short story collection Sex, Sehnsucht und Sirenen and Hingabe, an adventure novel Furien in Ferien – ein Lesbosabenteuer as well as the latest novel, released in 2015, Venuswelleeine Transgender Story. Chaosgirl was translated into Italian in 2012 and into English in 2014 (Twist of Lust and Trust). Karin Rick’s main characters defy role models. They parody stereotypes by distorting, transforming and breaking out of female archetypes and their diverse forms – such as diva, femme fatale, vamp, the fatal beauty, the idealized stranger or the woman between the worlds.
BBOOKS: Venuswelle (Venuswave), Novel, 2015, English translation in progress; Chaosgirl, Novel 2009, English translation: Twists of Lust and Trust, 2015; Italian translation: Un Caos di Ragazza, 2012; Wilde Liebe (Wild Love), Novel 2005, 2nd Edition 2007; Furien in Ferien – ein Lesbosabenteuer, Novel 2004; Hingabe (Surrender), Erotic Short Stories 2003; Sex ist die Antwort (Sex is the answer), Novel 1999, New Edition 2006; Der Rückfall (The backlash), Short Story 1999; Côte d’Azur – zwei Frauen, eine Liebesgeschichte (Côte d’Azur – two women, a love story), Short Story 1993; Sex, Sehnsucht & Sirenen (Sex, Desire and Sirens), Erotic Short Stories 1991, New Edition 1998; Böse Spiele (Naughty Games), Novel 1991, in Paperback 1993. Das Sexuelle, die Frauen und die Kunst ((Sexuality, Women and Art), konkursbuch 20, Theory 1987.
TTRANSLATIONS: Das Buch von Promethea (The book of Promethea), by Hélène Cixous Novel, 1990; Vom Anlass des Schreibens (How writing starts), by Alain Robbe-Grillet Essay, 1991; Der Fluch (The Curse), by Rachid Mimouni, Novel, 1993.


Karin Rick, for me, is an artist, who deftly pens hot topics with provocative impetus. The texts tie the sensual with the political, the private with the general, but also routine with leisure. Vacation plays a major role in her books – vacation as an existential situation – an exceptional social circumstance where she can study, almost through a magnifying glass, the fine mechanics of human relationships. In this she often chooses intuitive first person perspectives, to stage their lives or, so to speak, their adventures in life. This type of storytelling also begs the question to what extent the heroines of her novels are autobiographical, but I think that is part of her approach, it is her narrative mode. In her recent books, Karin Rick has selected a different style. Instead of an authoritative fixation on facts she has left us some leeway, room for possibilities, where we can individually play with ideas, and if we feel like it, engage in fantasies in our heads. Let me cite Helga Pankratz here, who said that the perceptions and insights of a whole orchestra of acting, thinking, and most of all feeling people –interlinks into a multi-dimensional mosaic and moves the plot along with suspense. In her books, Karin Rick has risked new linguistic techniques – and it has paid off. Because her writing is no “Betroffenheitsliteratur” (literature of the affected) but a verbal game, which touches on complexities of political-sexual relations, with refined, narrative projection, one could also speak of projectiles. Yet, the author is also a party to this. She is a well-known queer writer and committed to the rights of homosexuals (LGBTQ) and minorities. But she does it in a way that goes beyond eye-catching agit-prop or realism. Ricks novels are something like a poetic spiritual retreat. The French would call it “jouissance”: Sensual certainty in precarious situations, a micro politics of daily life, a careful crease of plucked disguising, even better, an existential costume. Books I would recommend to everyone, that look beyond individual designs of life – at the big picture of alternative worlds removed from cheap clichés. Dr. Gerald Matt, Kunsttheoretiker, Direktor a.D. der Kunsthalle Wien