It’s part of Ars Electronica’s nature to constantly seek out what’s new. In going about this, however, attention is never on art, on technology or on society singly while excluding the other two. Instead, the focus is always on complex changes and interrelationships at the nexus of all three. For three decades now, Ars Electronica has been living out this curiosity, a sense of inquisitiveness that is constantly manifesting itself in new and unexpected ways—as speculative futuristic scenarios or provocative actionism, philosophical debates or analytical scrutiny of current developments. At all times, Ars Electronica defines its artistic-scientific mission as working together with the public as well as working to educate the public. Regardless of periodic changes in content and inevitable structural updates, the fundamental orientation remains the same—the focus is constantly on the issues of critical importance to our society.
A Unique Platform
Its specific orientation and the long-term continuity it has displayed have made Ars Electronica an internationally unique platform for digital art and media culture. It’s made up of four divisions: an avant-garde festival, a competition that functions as a showcase of excellence, a museum dedicated to the mission of imparting knowledge & skills, and a media art lab that makes artistic expertise available for R&D purposes. Since 1979, the reciprocal inspiration of artistic, technical and scientific competence has been opening up new and surprising perspectives, as well as making possible completely new modes of collaboration.