Prix Ars Electronica Award Winners Called

Ars Electronica announces this year’s winners of the Prix Ars Electronica. The winners get 10.000 Euros each, that’s about 6000 salty squids for you English, and a Golden Nica which is a little statuette similar to the Oscars. Uncountable are of course the many fame and reputation credits that come with the awards which are handed out in six categories.

Tomek Baginski from Platige Image (Poland) won in the category
Computer Animation/Visual Effects with his work "Fallen Art", described as a ‘very black comedy’ in the Press Release. Sounds quite underground compared to the times when Toy Story won the award 10 times in a row (or maybe I am making this up? please comment me wrong if you have information to the contrary).

Laurie Anderson Unplugged

The Independent newspaper today has a review of the Laurie Anderson performance we all went to. What strikes me as a bit odd is that the reasons the reviewer gives for not liking her performance too much at all are exactly the same reasons why I actually enjoyed it very much.

So, for example, he criticises her for having a certain mannerism in the way she delivers her text. But the 'buts' and 'ands' with which Laurie starts her sentences are part of the way Laurie does things and has always done things. Thats part of her very personal technique of delivering her lyrics. Love it or leave it, but thats her style.

Post MA after party at Rampart street, east in Babylon! By Karel

Post Laurie Anderson MA after party at Rampart street, east in Babylon, social networking and Turkish and Korean XRLab dancing romantic surfing on waves of pop hope, exiting Korean and Turkish ladies moving around, but English, Welsh, Irish, German, Austrian, Argentinean machos deep in intellectual discussion about music and distribution. After the Laurie Anderson concert in Barbican, in transit from the pub on the corner to Rampart street. You can say that the Gold chained Armani decadent dressed up hippies enjoying a thoughtful romantic late evening concert with some nice tunes and lovely text, as English may say, but on the other hand, the format is good and could give some thoughts to the NME students.

Basically that was an NME format, maybe old but successful, Barbican was sold out._ and you look for jobs right? So formatting thoughts, your private diary, live and personal relations mixed with fine e-violin tunes, who is doing that? Miss Laurie has still a good voice and her music went obviously sweet grieving for the public tears. A sentence fly’s in “Karel are you working”, yes, why? …even under the christmess tree…” ok, bad US beer is served, I know will get headache from it, think loud “don’t by US beer at all – stop smoking US cigarettes”.

Splash of Interaction

Victoria Garcia Zapatero Soto's installation addresses interactive multimedia processes to help the learning experience of autistic children. Visitors said "It's a really good idea, we enjoyed playing". A lady who works with autism said she thought it would work well with the target age of children the project aims at. Another lady said she thought it was cool! Our editor talked privately to Victoria and she said she's looking for investors and sponsors who can help her to form a prototype, and later a product which is affordable for families and institutions.

Mirror Life Cinema

Allan Au's interactive installation caused mass disturbance and traffic jams in the corridors of the college. Moving image and animation BA students went beserk in front of the distorting images, amazed at the wonders of technology. Our special section editor caught Allan smiling in the corner, and thinking already about the next version of the Mirror Life Cinema.


Three dimensional projection surface as a body. A senso tracks the distance when vistors approach the sculpture, and accelerates or decreses the speed of the movie.

Echoes of Cybersonica 05

This may read a bit like a small child's reflections after having been to the fair or circus. I can tell you about lots of bright colours and new sounds / noises and nice people offering me things but there may not be much more to it...

Cybersonica 05 was made up of a number of quite distinct elements. There was the first two days at The Dana Centre and then another existence as The Art at Encompass at The Old Truman Brewery. There were symposia, performances, workshops and exhibits running throughout.

On the first day I caught parts of a session about Interactive Audiovisual Experiments. I chatted to Chris O'Shea afterwards because I found the ideas behind his work challenged things that bother me about lots of 'interactive' work that I think has a very narrow idea of what interaction involves. Particularly he talked about how important open source principles / ideas are to him.

Phonesthesia - No wonder Levin likes to talk

Golan Levin likes to talk. His presentation lasted for nearly three hours, covering a historical overview of 'audiovisuality and interactivity' as well as a comprehensive presentation of his work since 1998.

I was thoroughly distracted from what could have been a gruelling experience by the dynamism and sensuality of the ideas and the work presented.
<< from Audio Visual Environment Suites

This work, done at MIT and Carnegie Mellon Universities in the USA, falls somewhere between software development, research into human interaction and art. He identifies his main focus as developing new interface metaphors where he explores "dynamic, audiovisual substance, gesturally created and manipulated".

Levin reminds us of the recent merging of Adobe and Macromedia and tells us of the importance for him of programming his own software to generate his interfaces. "If you use the same software as everyone else you find yourself dealing with the affordances of these softwares" and the danger of this is that your work starts to look much the same as the same as others using the software.

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