Ars Electronica is THE new media arts festival: a core reference for audiovisual events and artists worldwide.
The festival and its audiovisual artists embrace new technology as a tool for artistic expression rather than the main factor of spectacularization.
This critical approach unlock the infinite creative possibilities within new technologies rather than fetishize them, as we have seen happening a lot with projection mapping and more recently with virtual reality.
The festival was founded in 1979 by cyberneticist/physicist Herbert W. Franke, electronic musician Hubert Bognermayr, music producer Ulli A. Rützel and Hannes Leopoldseder. It has come a very long way since then but it has always kept its main focus on the intersection of art, technology and society.
One of the most appealing elements of the festival is The Prix Ars Electronica: the most prestigious prize in new media arts, with hefty prizes up to 10.000€. Every year the Golden Nica is awarded to the ground-breaking fruits of artistic experimentation from audiovisual artists worldwide.
Ars Electronica features a wide variety of activities every year: Symposia, exhibitions, performances, concerts and interventions spanning a broad arc from speculative futuristic scenarios to analytical considerations, from provocative actionism to philosophical debate.
Combining amazing artworks with fruitful conversations is the perfect recipe to create a meaningful experience that constantly scans the new media landscape to find the most inspiring projects. The projects are not simply chosen based on their technical realization but most importantly because the social and artistic innovation they incorporate.
The result of this consistent endeavour is the creation of a loyal community of audiovisual artists, researchers and visitors from all over the world that every year reunites in Linz to inspire and get inspired.
Since its inception, the festival has been dedicated to develop new themes for each edition and the organizers are also constantly on the lookout for interesting new venues.
Indeed, the ongoing effort to break out of the narrow confines of conventional conference rooms and artistic spaces, and to stage cultural and scientific encounters in the public sphere has become something of an Ars Electronica trademark.
Stay tuned: Ars Electronica 2020 theme will be released soon!