As part of an effort to explore ways in which art can be used as a means of intercultural communication, the Ars Electronica Futurelab developed the Internet platform www.manipede.net.
The Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Art and Culture (Bm:ukk) commissioned a communications and presentation tool. This website is Austria's link to “With Hands and Feet,” an European pilot project designed to teach adolescents the basics of nonverbal communication in conjunction with the European Year of Intercultural Dialogue 2008. During the 2007-08 school year, multinational teams consisting of students (10- to 14-year-olds), teachers and artists have been working in the context of partnerships among schools in Austria, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary and Slovakia to develop projects that explore the potential of transnational nonverbal communication by means of artistic forms of expression. This website provides an ideal setting in which to make contributions from the fields of art, dance, theater, film, design and architecture available to an international audience, and also provides interactive cartographic functions that make it possible to position them in a local context as well as from the perspective of transnational collaborative efforts involving cities, schools and teams.
The “With Hands and Feet” project is also designed for sustainability and integration of other countries after the pilot phase. The Internet portal has been presented in conjunction with the ORF Dialogue Tour on April 22, 2008 in Klagenfurt, Austria and on May 6, 2008 at Vienna’s Museumsquartier.