Ars Electronica Blog

On our Ars Electronica Blog we supply you with background information about the Festival Ars Electronica. We will give you a taste of what you will expect in Linz from September 7 to 11, 2017. Read interviews with artists, curators, scientists, and get some inspiration around the theme that moves us this year: Artificial Intelligence.

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Theater & Digital Media: One Topic, Two Perspectives

Theater & Digital Media is debuting as a focal-point topic at Ars Electronica this year. September 7-11, 2017, this conclave is hosting encounters of, among others, traditional institutions such as Linz’s Landestheater and performative experiments like “Breaking the Wall” by Chris and Didi Bruckmayr. In this interview, we found out how digital media are changing both classical theater and experimental performances.
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Comically Inefficient: Joseph Herscher’s Machines

New York artist Joseph Herscher uses everyday objects to build Rube Goldberg machines that are as inefficient as can be. At the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival, he’ll be involved in three projects that illustrate his playful approach to creativity. In this interview, we found out what exactly awaits us.
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How much globalization can humankind stand?

This is the second year that the Ars Electronica Festival is hosting a “Perspectives on Political Education” symposium. This series of events under the aegis of Pädagogische Hochschule OÖ [state teachers college] is set for September 7-8, 2017. This year’s theme: “The world is my world. How much globalization can humankind stand?” Stefan Giegler told us what’s in store.
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Beyond Humans: Artificial Intelligence, Yawning Wide

Artificial intelligence is the theme of this year’s Ars Electronica. The 2017 media art festival’s encapsulating motif is provided by the “Beyond Humans” research project. The respective roles played by the android and the chimp depicted in this image were elaborated on by the project’s scholarly director, Ramiro Joly-Mascheroni.
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Consummate Electronic Music: Ars Electronica Nightline 2017

Night owls and music fans are in for a real treat at the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival. The Opening extravaganza on Thursday, September 7th and the Nightline on Friday, September 8th offer highly danceable riffs conducive to high-energy nights. We sat down with the Salon 2000 curatorial team to find out more.
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Not Your World Music: In Search of Traces in Southeast Asia

A project entitled “Not Your World Music: Noise in South East Asia” by artists Dimitri della Faille and Cedrik Fermont is one of the very few works about noise & sound art in Southeast Asia. In this interview, the 2017 Golden Nica winners talk about how they got involved in such a huge endeavor and their experiences during this journey of discovery.
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BR41N.IO Hackathon: On Your Marks, Get Set, Hack!

This event is the first of its kind at the Ars Electronica Festival—the BR41N.IO Hackathon demands high performance from hackers and designers, who’ll have 24 hours beginning at 11 AM on Friday, September 8th to conjure up projects based on brain-computer interfaces. To find out how this Hackathon will happen, what sort of stuff will come out of it, and who can register, read on.
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CyberArts 2017: Excellence in Media Art

The CyberArts exhibition running during the Ars Electronica Festival September 7-11, 2017 once again showcases this year’s Prix Ars Electronica prizewinners. In this interview, the exhibition staff tells us about the show and the accompanying program of events including OK Night.
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CREATE YOUR WORLD 2017: Adventure Playground of Media Art

An annual feature at the Ars Electronica Festival, CREATE YOUR WORLD, the future festival of the next generation, shows young people the ideas and technologies they’ll be using to change our world. Hans Christian Merten, director of CREATE YOUR WORLD, told about all the great stuff youngsters will be seeing, trying out and exploring September 7-11.
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Framing Media Art: The Festival Architecture

Configuring the 80,000-square-meter interior of POSTCITY Linz with lucid structures conducive to exhibiting media art is no easy task. But the architects at ANY:TIME took up this challenge and are working out a suitable framework for the artwork at the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival. Here, they discuss their approach.
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Ars Electronica Festival 2017: The Innovations

One thing the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival definitely won’t be is boring! Lots of fascinating new features await festivalgoers September 7-11. Ars Electronica Artistic Director Gerfried Stocker told us about what’s new on this year’s lineup.
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Computer Animation +++: The 2017 Ars Electronica Animation Festival

Screenings, symposia and hands-on adventure with virtual reality installations—there’s a lot doing at this year’s Ars Electronica Animation Festival September 7-11, 2017. We met up with the production team to find out more about the program, the participating artists and their works.
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The Essence of Human, Machine and Data: POINT ZERO

POINT ZERO, the exhibition elaborating on the Ars Electronica Festival’s theme, “Artificial Intelligence – The Other I,” (September 7-11, 2017) takes on big questions. What is the essence of a human being? Of a machine? Or, for that matter, of data? We sat down for a chat with Ars Electronica Artistic Director Gerfried Stocker to get a few initial clues.
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Sound Art at the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival: Sonic Saturday and Music Monday

With Sonic Saturday on September 9th and Music Monday on September 11th, the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival now features two days dedicated to sound art. What can we look forward to this year? We found out!
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“Integration concerns every one of us”: The 3rd Helpers Conference in Linz

A Helpers Conference organized by ZusammenHelfen in Oberösterreich (Helping Together in Upper Austria) will once again be held during the Ars Electronica Festival. Volunteers who work with refugees will gather for an exchange of information and ideas on Saturday, September 9, 2017 in POSTCITY Linz. Nicole Sonnleitner of ZusammenHelfen in Oberösterreich told us more.
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European Cooperative Projects: Innovation through Diversity

Taking advantage of this continent’s diversity—that’s what Ars Electronica has been doing in a broad spectrum of collaborative projects clear across Europe. In this interview, Festival Director Martin Honzik and Producer Veronika Liebl told us about them and what role they’ll play at the Ars Electronica Festival September 7-11, 2017.
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FEAT: Arts and Technologies of the Future

The FEAT Project staged seven nine-month residencies in which artists worked together with scientists at the interface of art and technology. At the FEAT interview panel on Saturday, September 9, 2017 at the Ars Electronica Festival, panelists will discuss why this collaboration can occasionally be difficult but is rewarding nevertheless.
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Nonvisual Art: Novel Images of Magical Beauty

Lisa Buttinger displayed meticulous attention to the most minute details as she went about completing her graduation project at Linz’s High School for Artistic Design. In this interview, she talks about what she calls nonvisual art, an innovative artistic medium that has garnered her twofold honors—the Golden Nica in the 2017 Prix Ars Electronica’s u19 – CREATE YOUR WORLD category and an Honorary Mention from the 2017 STARTS Prize.
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Interface Cultures’ Campus Exhibition: Made in Linz, Guaranteed

The Campus Exhibition at this year’s Ars Electronica Festival showcases Linz Art University’s Interface Cultures program. “Made in Linz” includes recent works of media art by undergraduates. The program’s founder and director, Christa Sommerer, offers some pre-show insights.
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Décor that really grows on you: Linz’s Municipal Gardens Are Greening the Ars Electronica Festival

POSTCITY Linz, the festival location, has been vacant for several years now. The gray halls seem deserted, cheerless. Linz’s municipal gardeners have been assigned the job of giving a friendly makeover to this interior in time for the Ars Electronica Festival September 7-11. The upbeat greenery got off to an auspicious start in mid-summer, and we were on hand to capture it.
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u19 Exhibit: Youngsters Design Their Own Exhibition!

Once again this year, the young honorees in the Prix Ars Electronica’s u19 category will decide for themselves how their prizewinning projects will be displayed at the Ars Electronica Festival, September 7-11 2017. They’re coming up with some initial ideas at an exhibition design workshop. The plans emerging now will become a reality by September.
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Fallout Shelter, Conveyer Belts, Spiral Packet Chutes and Lots of Media Art: Highlights of the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival in POSTCITY

September 7-11, 2017, POSTCITY Linz will once again morph into a sprawling playground of media artists from all over the world. The theme of this year’s Ars Electronica Festival is Artificial Intelligence – The Other I. We recently sat down with Festival Director Martin Honzik to get a sneak preview.
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Turnton Docklands: Walk-through Environmental Dystopia and Possible Vision of the Future

The Linz-based artists’ collective Time’s Up builds walk-through worlds, physical narratives, in which every object tells a story. At Ars Electronica Festival September 7-11, 2017, festivalgoers will be able to experience one of them: “Turnton Docklands.” We talked to Time’s Up about this mix of environmental dystopia, social utopia and disturbing future scenario.
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“A as in apple, B as in broccoli, C as in cheese …” The Organic Farmers’ Market at the Festival

The Ars Electronica Festival is dedicating an entire day to sampling organic delicacies of the highest quality in POSTCITY Linz. Once again this year, BIO AUSTRIA is staging a farmer’s market amidst all the media art. Here, BIO AUSTRIA’s Marlene Wolfsteiner tells us about all the healthy goodies festivalgoers will be enjoying, and why organic farming is so essential.
STARTS Prize 2017 Projects

2017 STARTS Prize: Innovative Projects That Cross the Boundaries of Disciplines

Dealing with complex issues calls for marshalling insights and skills from numerous fields, cultures and perspectives. Excellence in accomplishing this is precisely what the European Commission aims to honor with the STARTS Prize. Here, we present 2017’s best projects and what the jury’s statement has to say about them. Many will be featured in a special exhibition running at the Ars Electronica Festival in Linz.
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UCLA Making a Guest Appearance at Ars Electronica Festival

A top foreign university will once again be featured in the Campus Exhibition at the 2017 Ars Electronica Festival. This year’s special guest is UCLA–The University of California at Los Angeles. Here, Professor Victoria Vesna gives us a preview of the “Feminist Climate Change” exhibition and an account of how media art gained admission to college.
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Future Innovators Summit 2017: A Creative Think Tank for Big Questions about the Future

Embedded in the inspiring setting of the Ars Electronica Festival in POSTCITY Linz, the Future Innovators Summit is once again inviting motivated individuals from the worlds of art, technology and science to exchange ideas and thereby formulate questions of central importance to humankind’s future. FIS project director Hideaki Ogawa offers some conceptual points of departure for a stimulating encounter with the big issue: artificial intelligence.
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The Wandering Artist Project

For her proposal to send a robot with artistic skills into outer space, robotics engineer Sarah Petkus was the recipient of an Honorary Mention from the 2016 art&science@ESA. In this interview, she talks about her plans for her upcoming residency at the European Space Agency (ESA) and the Ars Electronica Futurelab, about humane robots, and the essential elements that actually constitute a robot.
Prix Winners 2017

The 2017 Golden Nicas

Congratulations to the winners of the 2017 Golden Nicas! 3,677 entries were submitted from 106 countries for 2017 Prix Ars Electronica prize consideration. We would like to introduce you to the award-winning works now.
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STARTS Prize: The 2017 Prizewinners

This year’s STARTS PRIZE recipients come from Japan and Switzerland. “I’m Humanity” garnered the Grand Prize for Artistic Exploration for Etsuko Yakushimaru; the Grand Prize for Innovative Collaboration goes to Gramazio Kohler Research at ETH–Swiss Federal Institute of Technology in Zurich and the Self-Assembly Lab at MIT for their “Rock Print” installation.
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Artificial Intelligence – The Other I

September 7-11, 2017, POSTCITY Linz will be the setting of a stimulating, comprehensive confrontation with the reality and the vision of artificial intelligence. We talked to Ars Electronica Artistic Director Gerfried Stocker about this year’s festival theme.