Netmeeting with Artistic Director of the ARS Electronica Center

February 18th, 2004

Categories: Animation, Cultural Heritage, Education, MFA Thesis, Multimedia, Sound Art, Video / Film, VR Art, Web Art


Director of the ARS Electronica Center - Museum of the Future, Linz, Austria; Graduate of the Institute for Telecommunication Engineering and Electronics in Graz. Since 1990, he has been working as an independent artist. In 1991, he founded X-Space, a team for the realization of interdisciplinary projects. In this framework numerous installations and performance projects have been carried out in the field of interaction, robotics and telecommunication. Stocker was also responsible for the concept of various radio and network projects and the organization of the worldwide radio and network project horizontal radio. 1992/93 he was responsible for the program of “Steirische Kulturinitiative”. Since 1995 Stocker has been the artistic director of the Ars Electronica Festival and the managing director of the ARS Electronica Center Linz.

Ars Electronica
The continuity Ars Electronica has displayed since 1979 has made it into an internationally unique platform for media art consisting of four divisions:

  • Ars Electronica - Festival for Art, Technology, and Society
  • Prix Ars Electronica - International Competition for Cyberarts
  • Ars Electronica Center - Museum of the Future
  • Ars Electronica Futurelab - Laboratory for Future Innovations

An interdisciplinary approach and the open encounter of international experts from the arts and sciences with a highly diversified audience characterize Ars Electronica.

Ars Electronica Festival - Festival for Art, Technology, and Society
Once a year, Linz is the center of computer culture. The Ars Electronica Festival, established in 1979 to provide an open meeting-place for artists and researchers, has since developed into a world-famous forum for the arts, technology, and society. From the beginning, Ars Electronica has been characterized by its accessibility and its rejection of artificial frontiers. Jointly with the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF) Upper Austria Regional Studio, it organizes symposiums, exhibitions, concerts, events, and a wealth of arts projects, and puts the latest trends and developments in the field of digital media on public display.

Prix Ars Electronica - International Competition for Cyberarts
Since 1987 the Prix Ars Electronica is an interdisciplinary platform for all who use the computer as a universal design medium in their artistic endeavour. It has been awarded annually by the Ars Electronica Center and the Austrian Broadcasting Corporation (ORF) Upper Austrian Studio in the framework of the Ars Electronica Festival, and is one of the most important prizes for the application of creativeness and the pioneering spirit in the field of digital media. The competition is divided into four categories: Net Vision / Net Excellence, Interactive Art, Computer Animation / Visual Effects, and Digital Music. A record 2,714 submissions from 85 countries in 2003 have further enhanced the Prix Ars Electronica’s reputation as the internationally representative competition honoring outstanding work in the cyberarts. With an annual prize of more than 100.000, - Euro, it is the biggest award for computer art in the world.

Ars Electronica Center - Museum of the Future
Since 1996, permanent exhibition areas on five levels of the Ars Electronica Center have been showcasing creative technologies and the innovative ideas of the 21st century to enable visitors to get acquainted with the technology of the future, gain hands-on experience with it and customize it to their needs, and interactively learn in a way that is fun, user-friendly, and designed with all visitors in mind, no matter what their level of computer experience. The facility’s hardware and software, its presentation and seminar rooms, as well as the know-how of its staff make it a fascinating interface for art, business and research. Robotic planting and watering in the TeleGarden or a fantastic journey through virtual worlds in the CAVE are just a couple of the possibilities in store for visitors.

Ars Electronica Futurelab - Laboratory for Future Innovations
Strongly committed to an interdisciplinary approach, the Ars Electronica Futurelab was created in 1996 and carries out R&D projects that call for state-of-the-art design and highly innovative thinking. Since its very inception, Ars Electronica’s focus has been on the tension and interplay at the nexus of art, technology and society. Formulating and implementing the future manifestations of this interaction is the chosen mission of the Ars Electronica Futurelab.

  • Gerfried Stocker: The passage from being an artist to becoming a curator and director of a museum
  • Electronic-net-art… Virtual Reality art… Necessary ingredients of a “quality” piece?
  • Vision of The Ars Electronica Center toward networking and Virtual Reality Art.
  • What type of Virtual Art, does the Ars Electronica Center exhibit… and why?
  • What is for you a visionary artist in the electronic field?
  • In your opinion what is the most ultimate innovative tendencies in the art field at present?
  • What is the borderline between art, science technology if there is any? What do you consider art and what is technology / science?
  • Concept and vision of Ars Electronic Festival 2004
  • What opportunities for exhibits your organization can provide to artists working with Virtual Reality