Ars Electronica Gardens: Australia & New Zealand

Posted 20 August 2020

Ars Electronica Gardens: Australia & New Zealand

Ars Electronica has a long-term and intensive relationship with Australia and New Zealand and has established a “satellite office” – Ars Electronica Australia. The organisations vision is to support the creative community at the interface of art, technology and society.

The journey to Ars Electronica Gardens has been captured right here, from in Australia and New Zealand. The organisation has shared an abundance of memories from past Ars Electronica Festival nights and has dived into the endless expanse of digital galleries. They question alternative futures, where land is not a commodity, local food production is a matter of course and indigenous understanding of the role of man is heard. Come and join as they explore!

Ars Electronica Gardens Melbourne

Image: Matthew Gardiner, sourced from Ars Electronica.

In Melbourne we meet an extensive garden network. Matthew Gardiner was an artist and researcher at the Ars Electronica Futurelab for a long time before returning to his home country. He’s making two completely different contributions to this year’s festival: With “Beside the Nibelungen Bridge” he recalls the days and nights of past Ars Electronica Festivals and calls on all Linzers, artists, visitors and friends to remember together.
“Oribokit: Gardening for Robots” enables the creation of an origami robot garden. Workshop participants will be instructed to fold, assemble and start their own oribotic garden.

Melbourne: Experimenta Garden

The Experimenta Garden, for example, is showing “A Drone Opera” by the artist Matthew Sleeth – a project that developed over a period of five years and is visualised as a performance, installation and film. It deals with the social acceptance of total surveillance and the increased presence of military systems in non-military environments.
“Our hubris with technology, the constant surveillance by the government and the idea that we are often distracted by the bright, shiny lights and worry about the wrong things” (Sleeth, 2015) were accelerated by this global pandemic.

Melbourne: Part of Science Gallery Network

In the garden of the Science Gallery you can marvel at the best of the world’s only university network dedicated to public engagement with science and art. A virtual tour of Dublin, for example, or a discussion on cultural transformation, a digital exhibition or a therapy session in virtual reality. The creation of art and science exhibitions can be viewed behind the scenes and a live workshop is available.

The Science Gallery network consists of leading universities that have joined together around a unique mission: To ignite creativity and discovery where science and art meet. It includes the founding institution Trinity College Dublin (IE); King’s College London (UK); the University of Melbourne (AU); the Indian Institute of Science, Srishti School of Art Design and Technology, The National Centre for Biological Sciences (IN); Ca’ Foscari University in Venice (IT); Michigan State University (US); Erasmus University Medical Centre (NL); and Emory University (US).

Melbourne: Past and Future Utopia

The indigenous land of the Dja Dja Wurrung in rural Victoria provides the setting for two projects whose narrative revolves around the pre-settlement period, colonization and a utopian post-colonial perspective. They deal with the role, use and significance of land as well as indigenous biodiversity, a return to local food production and the question of a post-colonial future that overcomes the neoliberal concept of land as a commodity.

In “An Utopian Post-Colonial Future – Victoria, Australia 2027” the students of the master class of the Melbourne School of Design developed a variety of future scenarios that can be experienced using VR and invite reflection.

Article information sourced from Ars Electronica Website.

Read the full article here. 

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