Contemporary digital sound productions from the broad spectrum of "electronica" come in for consideration in the "Digital Musics" category, as do works combining sound and media, computer compositions ranging from electro-acoustic to experimental music, as well as sound installations. Regardless of the media or style utilized by the respective artist, utmost consideration is given to the entry’s musical qualities and sound artistry.



This music category of the Prix Ars Electronica is open to:

  • Sound and New Media- (audio visual performance, sonic sculpture, intermedia / video / film soundtracks, installations, soundspace projects, radio works, net-music, generative musics, etc.)
  • Electronica- as in Dub, Techno, Microsound, Ambient, Global, Minimal, HipHop, Jazz, Noise, Downtempo, Drum'n Bass, Mondo/Exotica, digital DJ-culture, Mash-ups, Music videos, Glitch, Plunderphonics etc.
  • Computer compositions (algorithmic, acousmatic and experimental), analog and electro-acoustic methodologies, the use of voices and acoustic or amplified instruments are allowed as well, but the crucial criterium is the artistic and inventive use of digital tools to manifest a convincing realization.

The crucial criterion is the artistic and innovative use of digital tools to manifest a convincing realization.
Participants may be individuals, groups, institutions, companies, etc. Exclusively commercially oriented activities in the sense of product advertisement are excluded.
Each participant may enter only one work, which has been created, realized or significantly updated within the last two years.


All works must be submitted on audio CD, DAT, DVD Audio, DVD Video, including specification of the necessary codecs, plug-ins and formats (such as NTSC and PAL).
Enter projects such as sound installations, real-time performances, audio/visual environments, etc. as a video document (3-10 minutes). This documentation should describe not only the event itself but also the characteristics of the work's environment aside from the music, such as spatial and technical requirements for the realization of the piece.
Along with the work, please include a comprehensive description of the work as well as information about equipment, scores, set-ups, and any illustrations or sketches if possible.

In addition to the complete work, please include a 2-3 minute excerpt that effectively gives an introductory summation of the essential elements explored in the whole piece. This edited extract can serve as a compressed remix of different musical areas of the longer composition, or the participant can simply choose a continuous representative slice. This helps the jury to deal with large quantities of submissions in a focused judicial manner.
Award-winning works may be performed in conjunction with the 2009 Ars Electronica Festival. Entrants are therefore requested to provide precise information about the technical set-up of all required equipment as well as suggestions regarding any technicians, musicians or soloists necessary to implement the production plans submitted.
We ask you to use the online registration at prixars.aec.at to register and send the signed print-out of the online registration form along with your entry material by March 6, 2009 to:

Ars Electronica Linz GmbH
Hauptstraße 2
4040 Linz, Austria
Code: Prix
or per fax to +43.732.7272-674


All the entries will be judged by a jury of experts in the order of their arrival and according to the following criteria:

  • Aesthetics, originality
  • Compelling conception
  • Innovation in the special expression of sonic imagination
  • Technique and quality of the presentation

In addition to the works entered by participants, each jury may also nominate other works.

NICA WINNERS 1987-2008

Peter Gabriel/Jean Claude Risset
Denis Smalley
Kaija Saariaho
Alejandro Viñao
Bernard Parmegiani
Ludger Brümmer
Trevor Wishart
Robert Normandeau
Matt Heckert
Peter Bosch/Simone Simons
Aphex Twin (Richard D. James)/Chris Cunningham
Carsten Nicolai
Ryoji Ikeda
Yasunao Tone
Ami Yoshida/Sachiko M/Utah Kawasaki
Thomas Köner
Maryanne Amacher
Eliane Radigue
Masahiro Miwa
Sergi Jordà, Günter Geiger, Martin Kaltenbrunner, Marcos Alonso

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Net Vision / Net Excellence at Prix Ars Electronica
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