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Opening of net.culture.space – Art and Communications Technology in Vienna’s Museumsquartier
Premiering July 3, 2007 in quartier21/MQ: an innovative permanent exhibition project created by Telekom Austria and Ars Electronica Linz – art and culture of networked communication – rotating exhibits showcase diverse and dynamic varieties of contemporary media art in the form of alternative models, fun experiments, innovative applications and off-beat, ironic critiques of technology and society - free admission – launch of the “net.culture.21” exhibit running from July 4 to August 5, 2007

Linked up with other people in networks, linked up within the system, linked up between real and virtual worlds—the global networking of information and knowledge is one of the defining phenomena of our age. “With net.culture.space, we’re fostering artistic, visionary and sensory encounters with this emerging culture of networked communication and, at the same time, setting up a space that’s compatible with it,” said Rudolf Fischer, Deputy CEO of the Supervisory Board of Telekom Austria Group and initiator of the project. “We’re witnessing a historical turning point to a knowledge-based Information Society. The necessary basis is already in place: ubiquitous broadband networks for every form of communication involving language, data and multimedia.”

Nevertheless, the constant bombardment with short-lived hype surrounding these rapid technological developments makes it tough to clearly see their true potential. “net.culture.space thus functions as an interdisciplinary platform designed to spotlight the dynamism and diversity of media artists’ creativity at the interface of art, technology and society,” said Gerfried Stocker, artistic director of Ars Electronica, Telekom Austria’s partner on this project.

Rotating Exhibits, Free Admission, Open Daily 10 AM to 8 PM

net.culture.space doesn’t present exhibitions in a conventional sense; instead, it’s a setting for cyclically rotating, interactive scenarios that function via direct, hands-on experience. The first focal-point theme will run from July to October 2007: “Web 2.0 – Digital Communities” subsumes five diverse exhibits that will each run for about four weeks. These artistic works range across a spectrum from amusing immersions into digital spaces to critical assessments of a Brave New World.

net.culture.space is open daily from 10 AM to 8 PM. Admission is free of charge. Infotrainers will be on hand to provide user-friendly help with the installations as well as to mediate visitors’ encounters with artistic forms and contents. Round-table discussions, special guided tours and a blog round out the interdisciplinary process of coming to terms with the respective focal-point themes. Details are available at www.netculturespace.at.

Wolfgang Waldner, director of Vienna’s MuseumsQuartier, is delighted with his new quartier21 associates: “At quartier21, we’ve created a space for cultural visions that has received an enthusiastic reception worldwide over the last few years. And a strong emphasis on digital culture began to emerge right from the outset. Thus, the initiative by Telekom Austria and Ars Electronica is a logical extension of the existing offerings of our “Quarter for Digital Culture,” and finds an ideal setting here. This is why I’m especially pleased to welcome net.culture.space.”

Opening Exhibit
July 4 to August 5, 2007

The premiere exhibit in net.culture.space also kicks off the “Web 2.0 – Digital Communities” focal-point theme: “net.culture.21” elaborates on the significance of the new network culture that is proliferating worldwide.

net.culture.21 projects:

by Jens Brand (D)

The G-Player’s physical appearance isn’t the only thing about it that’s reminiscent of a CD player or a turntable; it functions according to a similar principle too. The G-Player can track the position of more than 1,000 satellites and simulate their orbits. The topography of the terrain being flown over is then analyzed and set to music like an audio file. Just like the grooves of a vinyl disc, mountain ranges generate more dynamic structures than flat landscapes. G-Player is an innovative and ironic play on prevailing trends in media art: for one thing, it conceives of digital information as a palpable, analog reality; on the other hand, it undermines the primacy of visual input that is incessantly focused on the quick overview and speedy consumption. In accordance with the G-Player’s logic, the oceans are “mute.” And since 70% of the Earth’s surface is covered by water, the G-Player is “quiet” most of the time. Thus, leisure and patience are called for on the part of those who wish “to hear the Earth.”

Shared Design Space
by Hagenberg Technical College, Digital Media Program (A)

The “office of the future” consists of multi-functional interfaces that get along without keyboard and mouse while still doing an optimal job managing the tasks and content at hand. Shared Design Space illustrates how such an interactive desk might look. Its desktop functions as a high-definition projection surface that’s linked up with an interactive presentation wall. The entire desk surface can be used as a digital graphic tablet. Ideas and concepts can be sketched using a wireless stylus and combined with digital content. The final result can then be sent to the digital wall display for viewing.

Noise & Voice
by Golan Levin (USA), Zachary Lieberman (USA)

Ever seen your own voice? Noise & Voice makes everything audible visible as well. Here, your larynx becomes an instrument that lets you create virtual sculptures. In response to each sound, the computer generates an animated three-dimensional graphic whose form, color and motion correspond to the pitch, tone and intensity of the sound.

WikiMap Vienna
by Ars Electronica Futurelab (A)

A city map that tells stories. A city map can do a lot more than merely provide an overview of streets and buildings. It can reflect the lives of the people who walk along these streets and live in these buildings. WikiMap Vienna is just such a city map. At www.wikimap.at/ncs anybody can get actively involved in customizing it by adding texts, images and sounds to buildings, streets and squares. This genre of location-based multimedia storytelling is suited to a wide variety of projects and agendas—from associative, artistically inspired encounters with the cityscape to manifestos on future urban planning issues. The result is a map comprised of information, impressions and sounds, though actually not a conventional map at all, but rather an interactive domain of knowledge and communication.

by Ars Electronica Futurelab (A)

Whether its photos and greetings, wishes, suggestions or complaints you want to post, you can do it better with Flick_rBoard, an updated version of the blackboard. This media installation thrives on user-contributed content and constitutes a dynamic public communications platform. Tablet PCs register handwritten notes and pictograms, or let you add scribbles to photos you’ve already taken. These communiqués appear as Post-its and Polaroids on digital bulletin boards, and can be sent back and forth between Vienna and Linz or posted to Flickr.

net.culture.21 Exhibit Info

quartier21/MQ (transeuropa)
Museumsplatz 1 / 1070 Vienna, Austria

Current Exhibit Run     July 4 to August 5, 2007

Vernissage               July 3, 2007 at 7 PM

Information     /          Telephone: +43 – (0) 732 7272-0
Contact               info@netculturespace.at / www.netculturespace.at

Hours                    10 AM to 8 PM

Admission               Free of charge

Curators                Gerfried Stocker, artistic director of Ars Electronica Linz
Christopher Lindinger, Ars Electronica Futurelab

Exhibit Architecture      Scott Ritter

© Ars Electronica Linz GmbH, info@aec.at