Stippels & Pixels is a discovery journey from the 19th-century pointillism to the present world of pixels. The starting point was partly obvious, as the entire Zebrastraat complex was realised by Charles Van Rysselberghe, brother of the artist Théo Van Rysselberghe, who was the most important representative of Neo-Impressionism in Belgium. This art movement relied on scientific grounds, a factor that also propels our contemporary digital world. About forty works were shown in the brand new exhibition hall grouped in a few themes: dots as the basis of the imaging; the number behind things; image migrations; griding and telecommunication; multimedia and the return of the synesthesia.
The exhibition showed work by the artists Peter Beyls, Jean-Louis Boissier, Anouk De Clercq, Edmond Couchot & Michel Bret, Chris Cunningham, Francois Curlet, Jean-Marie Dallet, Koen De Decker, Driessens & Verstappen, Masaki Fujihata, Jerry Galle, Tobias Grewenig, Thierry Guibert, Peter Kogler, Piotr Kowalski, Christian Laroche, William Latham, Sol LeWitt, Lia, Matt Mullican, David Renaud, Soda Play, Koen Theys, Erki de Vries.
Piotr Kowalski: a tribute
- By way of tribute to artist / scientist Piotr Kowalski who deceased in 2004, a special room was set up during update_1 showing his work, which is constantly shifting between art and science. In Kowalski's art, science is something close to humans, as a way to interact with the world around us.
Update_2 presented masterpieces from the ZKM collection by Jim Campbell, Heinz Mack, Piero Fogliati, Bruno Munari, Kovac Architecture, Masaki Fujihata, Golan Levin, Wolfgang Münch, Jeffrey Shaw, Tony Oursler and Bruce Nauman. Esther Polak, Michell and Jean-Pierre Hartmann produced new work for the Zebrastraat. The exhibition was accompanied by a comprehensive program of films, molecular cooking, lectures, debates, a concert, ...
An international jury selected the various art projects on Tuesday, January 29, 2008 from the entries representing 16 different countries (Belgium, the Netherlands, France, Germany, Great Britain, Switzerland, Austria, Romania, Slovenia, Japan, Israel, USA, New Zealand, Canada, Brazil, Paraguay, ...). The jury consisted of Jean-Marie Dallet (Professor and curator update_1) - Philippe Van Cauteren (Director S.M.A.K. Ghent) - Françoise Meesen (Liedts-Meesen Foundation) - Dirk De Wit (Director BAM) - Stef Van Bellingen (Consultant Zebrastraat / Artistic director WARP ) - Esther Polak (artist – Laureate of Ars Electronica Linz 2005).
The shortlisted artists were Juliana Borinski & P-L Cassière (BR/FR), Frederik De Wilde (BE), Kurt d'Haeseleer (BE), Nick Ervinck (BE), Wim Janssen (BE), Christoph Wachter & Mathias Jud (CH), Leroy + Leroy (FR), Julien Maire (FR), Christophe Meierhans (DE), OpenEndedGroup (US) and Janek Schaefer (GB).
The jury award of 5000 euros was handed over on Sunday, June 1, 2008 to Julien Maire (FR) for his work 'Exploding camera', the public prize went to Nick Ervinck (BE) with 'Studies 2004-2006'. The installation 'Exploding Camera' (2007) by Julien Maire (1969, Metz, FR) was selected by Philippe Van Cauteren for presentation at the S.M.A.K. (Museum of Contemporary Art) in Ghent between 13/12/2008 and 22/02/2009.
Motivation by the jury for its choice of 'Exploding Camera' Julien Maire:
'Exploding Camera' is a spatial artwork based on an attack on Commander Massoud with a bomb camera in the period of 9/11. The jury had several motivations to acclaim this work:
- It links art to international politics and economics
- The intelligent use of technology
- The "media archaeology" (the processing of various film and pre-cinematic devices)
- Though the artwork seems to be an explosion in a space (a deconstruction), it is actually a construction of a somewhat forgotten reality.
- The perfect performance of the work, despite the fragile appearance
- The temptation for the visitor to unravel the work.
Julien Maire (from France but at that moment living and working in Berlin) responded very enthusiastically. There are already not so many prizes for artists who are not active in the more traditional media (painting or sculpture), but he is particularly pleased that the story of Commander Massoud will become better known outside France and Germany. The assassination of Massoud became the subject of French research journalism, and two years after his death, even a postage stamp with his portrait was made. As main leader of the anti-Taliban alliance, he is considered a national hero in Afghanistan. The technical means are for Julien Maire subordinated to the impact of the overall picture, and he also wants the viewer to comprehend the (manipulated) reality.
The public awarded the work of artist Nick Ervinck ‘Studies 2004-2006’. As a result of its selection the Liedts-Meesen Foundation gave the artist the opportunity to convert his computer-animated images into a larger than life installation. On the night of 28 on 29/07/2009 two identical but mirrored frame structures were placed on the roofs of Zebrastraat. The sculptures each are 12 meter long by 6 meter wide. The artwork, called ‘WARSUBEC’, was constructed in Venlo (NL) and transferred by special transport to Ghent.
Update_3/ Body Sound is an exhibition by the New Media Department of Centre Pompidou, designed by the Bureau des Mésarchitectures in Paris, and realized by the Zebrastraat, at the initiative of the Liedts-Meesen Foundation, under the artistic direction of Christine Van Assche. Sound works were selected from the collection of the New Media Department. The challenge was to present a history of sound in the arts. Big names in contemporary art such as Bruce Nauman, Vito Acconci, Manon de Boer, Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, Carsten Nicolai - Alva Noto, Anouk De Clercq, Didier Faustino, Mike Kelly / Scanner, Martin Creed, Adam McEwen, Keiko Owada, Mika Vainio, Chris Marker, Ugo Rondinone, Emmanuel Lagarrigue and Semiconductor were presented next to and between one another along the exhibition circuit. The architects of the Bureau des Mésarchitectures, Paris made a special scenography.
For the second time a contest was organized under the name of the New Technological Art Award of the Liedts-Meesen Foundation, with a presentation of 10 works. The artists were selected from 264 entries from over 45 different countries. The international jury consisted of Peter Weibel (ZKM Karlsruhe Director), Jean-Marie Dallet (Paris 8 University Professor and curator update_1), Philippe Van Cauteren (Director S.M.A.K., Ghent), Françoise Meesen (Liedts-Meesen Foundation), Dirk De Wit (Director BAM - Institute for visual, audiovisual and media art), Stef Van Bellingen (Consultant Zebrastraat / Artistic director WARP ), Christine Van Assche (Curator of New Media Centre Pompidou, Paris), Art Yan (Exhibition Organiser E-Arts Festival, Shanghai), Nick Ervinck (Artist, winner of the public prize update_2), Julien Maire (Artist, winner of the prize of the jury update_2).
The following 10 artists were nominated:
Perry Bard (US) ‘Man With A Movie Camera: The Global Remake’
Félix Luque Sánchez (ES) ‘Chapter I: The Discovery’
Boris Debackere (BE) ‘Probe’
Peter Alwast (AU) ‘Everything’
Peter Beyls (BE) ‘Petri’
Dominika Sobolewska (PL) ‘RGB (Red-Green-Blue)’
Go Eun Im (KR) ‘SEE(N)’
Christoph De Boeck (BE) ‘Staalhemel’
Arthur Elsenaar (NL) ‘Face Shift’
Julien Gachadoat (FR) ‘Gravity’
The jury award of 5000 euro was handed over on Sunday, June 20, 2010 to Julien Gachadoat (FR) for his work ‘Gravity’, a shared audience award went to ‘Gravity’ and ‘SEE(N)’ of Go Eun Im (KR). Motivation by the jury its choice of ‘Gravity’.
Julien Gachadoat winner of the New Technological Art Award Foundation Liedts Meesen-2010
With ‘Gravity’ the jury chooses an interactive real-time system merging architecture, telephony and typography. The viewer can send a text message, which is then projected onto a wall, in order to establish a poetic dialogue between architecture and audience. In a unique and surprising way and with a special appeal Julien Gachadoat knows to guide the texts formally and visually in their track.
An ex aequo public prize was awarded to 'Gravity' by Julien Gachadoat and ‘SEE(N)’ by Go Eun Im. The South Korean Eun Im Go knows how to charm the audience with her personal view on looking and remembering. The interactive work ‘SEE(N)’, to see and to be seen, directs our gaze towards an inventive and artistic mania.
At the occasion of the fourth biennale for contemporary technological art in the Zebrastraat, Ghent, Belgium, and iMAL, La Cambre, Brussels, the New Technological Art Award of the Liedts-Meesen Foundation went to the work ‘Nihil Ex Nihilo’ of Félix Luque Sánchez, for which he receives 5 000 euros. The public awards went ex aequo to Wim Janssen with ‘Static’ and Julijonas Urbonas for ‘Euthanasia Coaster’. These artists were selected from 337 entries from 40 different countries worldwide by an international jury consisting of Jean-Marie Dallet (Professor and Commissioner of Update I), Alain Liedts (Chairman of the Liedts-Meesen Foundation), Dirk De Wit (Director of BAM, Flemish Institute for visual, audiovisual and media art), Stef Van Bellingen (Consultant for Zebrastraat - Artistic director WARP), Nick Ervinck (Artist and winner of the update_2 public award), Julien Maire (Artist and winner of the update_2 jury’s award), Yves Bernard (Founder of the art organisation iMAL) and Pierre-Yves Desaive (Professor at La Cambre, art critic Flash Art, L'Art Même, and art historian at KMSKB-MRBAB).
Update_4: Prize of the Jury
‘Nihil ex Nihilo’ by Félix Luque Sánchez (SP) was the winner elected by the Jury of the 2012 NTAA. With this work, Félix Luque continued his exploration around machine intelligence and themes typical of science fiction that he started with his previous installation ‘Chapter I: The Discovery’. He developed an original formal expression, hybrid between installation and narration, where the visitor is invited to progress through a succession of spaces. The work plays with many modes of expression, from audiovisual, sculptural, computational to narrative ones. It is a complex but relevant integration of techniques (3D animation, text to speech, AI, electronic, network processes, digital manufacturing,...) to raise issues about the nature of intelligence and the fate of intelligent creatures.
Update_4: ex aequo public prices
Julijonas Urbonas ‘Euthanasia Coaster’
The Lithuanian artist Julijonas Urbonas could expect that there would be some reaction to his design, but not to that spectacular extent : at peak times his website had over 20,000 hits per day, and that for a scale model of a roller coaster. ‘Euthanasia Coaster’ is a (minutely calculated, real and feasible) design of a roller coaster in which people can put an end to their life with "elegance and euphoria". The contemporary problem of overpopulation, suicide and euthanasia which divides our society, is at the basis of this design. The artist does not make any ethical judgment, for or against, but through the aesthetics he examined the possible conditions under which through the kick of g-forces and euphoric moments, one could arrive in the afterlife. 'Euthanasia Coaster' seems a radical consequence of our entertainment society that needs existential reflection.
Wim Janssen ‘Static’
Wim Janssen studied experimental film and video at the Sint-Lukas in Brussels. ‘Static’ is a spatial installation in which, using simple means, the phenomenon of noise or a snowy image on a television is visualized. We know this phenomenon when, by the distance, a fading or loss of signal occurs. Using tiny plexi panels, the precise placement in space, movement, rotation, the light angle and polarization, Janssen recreates this remarkable artefact of the technology. Not only the iconic image itself, but also the manual way it is obtained, made a fierce impression on the visitors.
Following the exhibition update_4 in Zebrastraat in Ghent, the art school La Cambre and iMAL in Brussels, a colloquium was organized around the theme "immortal" in art. Museum directors, restaurateurs, philosophers, artists and scientists reflected on the physical and symbolic survival of artworks and more specifically computer-related or technological art. It is clear that the traditional paradigms concerning preservation and conservation are under pressure. This raises new questions about what can and should be preserved. Through the realization of 'scores', which act as a guide, it becomes possible to reproduce an artwork, and consequently the concept of authenticity gets a new interpretation. The results of this three day colloquium are published online with text and moving images.
In reply to the call for projects for our international contest ‘New Technological Art Award 2014’, 383 candidates representing 50 nationalities worldwide have registered. The twenty nominated works were
Nurit Bar-Shai (IL) ‘Objectivity [tentative]: Soundscapes series’
JD Beltran (US) + Scott Minnemann (US) ‘Cinema Snowglobe’
Jo Caimo (BE) ‘InnerRhythms’
Martin John Callaman (UK) ‘Departure of All’
Mattia Casalegno (IT) ‘RBSC.01’
Mats Dekock (BE) ‘Reconstructing Mariënbad’
Alisa Goikhman (IL) ‘LangWidgets’
Bart Hess (NL) ‘Digital Artefacts’
Beverley Hood (UK) ‘Glitching’
Karl Jeron (DE) ‘Hermes Opera’
Nandita Kumar (IN) ‘eLEMenT:EARTH’
Ebru Kurbak (TR) + Irene Posch (AT) ‘The Knitted Radio’
Keith Lam (HK) ‘One Day Social Sculpture’
LIA, (AT) ‘Filament Sculptures’
Dave Murray-Rust (UK) + Rocio von Jungenfeld (DE) ‘Lichtsuchende’
Stéfan Piat (FR) ‘Isola’
Quayola (IT) ‘Captives’
Stefan Tiefengraber (AT) ‘User Generated Server Destruction’
Jacob Tonski (US) ‘Balance From Within’
Patrick Tresset (FR) ‘5 Robots Named Paul’
Alex Verhaest (BE) ‘Temps Mort / Idle Times – Dinner Scene’
This jury was composed of: Idis Hartmann (Scientific Assistant Director of Prof. Peter Weibel of ZKM Karlsruhe, Germany), Jean-Marie Dallet (Professor at the University of Poitiers and exhibition commissioner of Update I, France), the Liedts-Meesen Foundation, Stef Van Bellingen (Consultant Zebrastraat - Artistic Director WARP), Paul Dujardin (Artistic Director BOZAR, Brussels, Belgium), Nick Ervinck (Artist and winner of the Price of the Public of Update II, Belgium), Julien Maire (Artist and winner of the Prize of the Jury of update_2, Belgium), Alain Thibault (Artistic Director of ELEKTRA, Montréal), Martin Honzík (Head of Department Prix / Festival Ars Electronica, Linz - Austria), Edwin Carels (Curator New Media exhibitions, Belgium) and Patrick Allegaert (Artistic Director Museum Dr. Guislain).
Of the 10 international judges 9 have announced their judgment. Five artists received more than 8 points:
1. Quayola (IT) ‘Captives'
ex aequo Jacob Tonski (US) ‘Balance From Within’
3. Patrick Tresset (FR) ‘5 Robots Named Paul’
4. Nurit Bar-Shai (IL) ‘Objectivity [tentative]: Soundscapes series’
ex aequo Stefan Tiefengraber (AT) ‘User Generated Server Destruction’
The jury award thus went to two artists:
Quayola (IT) ‘Captives’
Jacob Tonski (US) ‘Balance From Within’
Exceptionally the price of 5000 euros was awarded to both artists.
‘Captives’ – Quayola : “’Captives’ is an ongoing series of digital and physical sculptures, a contemporary interpretation of Michelangelo’s unfinished series ‘Prigioni’ and his technique of ‘non-finito’. The classic figures are left unfinished, documenting the very history of their creation and transformation. Industrial computer-controlled robots sculpt the resulting geometries into life-size ‘unfinished’ sculptures’.”
‘Balance From Within’ – Jacob Tonski : “A 170 year old sofa balances precariously on one leg, continuously teetering, responding internally to external forces. Relationships are balancing acts, and delicate ones at that. This idea turned into a balancing sofa as Tonski was thinking about how all of our social interactions can take place on these pieces of furniture.”
Both artists received a positive appreciation from four different judges. The proposed works respond to the requirements of the competition and its rules concerning the aesthetic use of new technologies, in response to contemporary values.
Of the more than 2,000 visitors 525 casted a valid vote. The following five artists received more than 30 votes:
1. Patrick Tresset (TR) ‘5 Robots Named Paul’
2. Jacob Tonski (US) ‘Balance From Within’
3. Dave Murray-Rust (UK) + Rocio Von Jugenfeld (DE) ‘Lichtsuchende’
4. Bart Hess (BE) ‘Digital Artefacts’
5. Stefan Tiefengraber (AT) ‘User Generated Server Destruction’
The public award consists of the presentation of the work, in the course of 2015, at a major European cultural centre or museum. This award went indisputably to the artist Patrick Tresset with his work ‘5 Robots Named Paul’. “In a scene reminiscent of a life drawing class, the human takes the sitter’s role to be sketched by five robots. The drawing sessions last up to 40 minutes, during which time the human cannot see the drawings in progress. The sitter only sees the robots alternating between observing and drawing, sometimes pausing. The human sitter is passive, the robots taking the creative sensitive role.”
In addition to the works of the NTAA, several key works were displayed at Zebrastraat coming from the world of art, of scientific discoveries or breakthrough innovations that have significantly changed our way of living and thinking. These objects or concepts form the basis for a separate presentation and perception, in dialogue with the artworks of the nominees of the NTAA. The participating artists were Nick Ervinck (BE) 3D print ‘LUIZAERC’, Didier Faustino (FR) ‘Love me tender 2000’, FRONT404 ‘Eyestalkers’, Bart Prinsen ‘The world [dis]appearing on level_3’, LAb[au] Els Vermang ‘Chrono’.
In reply to the call for projects for our international contest New Technological Art Award 2019, 487 candidates representing 59 nationalities worldwide have registered.
The selected projects for update_6 / NTAA 2016 are:
- 1024 architecture – François Wunschel, Jason Cook, Pier Schneider (FR) ‘WALKING Cube’
- Assocreation / Daylight Media Lab (AT/TH) ‘Solar Pink Pong’
- Alessio Chierico (IT) ‘Trāṭaka’
- CREW_Eric Joris (BE) ‘Collateral Rooms’
- Michiel De Cleene (BE) ‘Reference Guide’
- Dries Depoorter (BE) ‘Sheriff Software’
- Verena Friedrich (DE) ‘THE LONG NOW’
- Julien Grossmann (FR) ‘Breakaway Songs’
- Elias Heuninck (BE) ‘Lightkeeping’
- Michael Kugler (US) & Sebastian Wolf (DE) ‘Brume’
- Marc Lee (CH) ‘Pic-me’
- Michael Mandiberg (US) ‘Print Wikipedia’
- Quadrature – Jan Bernstein, Juliane Götz, Sebastian Neitsch (DE) ‘Satelliten’
- Theresa Schubert (DE) ‘Growing Geometries (Tattooing Mushrooms)’
- Karina Smigla-Bobinski (DE) ‘SIMULACRA’
- Maja Smrekar (SI) ‘K-9_topology: ECCE CANIS’
- Stanza (UK) ‘The Reader’
- Bill Vorn & Louis-Philippe Demers (CA) ‘Inferno’
- Lien-Cheng Wang (TW) ‘Regeneration Movement’
Work in dialogue: 'IVY2.0' by Tom Dekyvere
The 19 nominated works were selected by an international jury: Head of the jury Martin Honzik (Head of Department Prix/Festival Ars Electronica) together with Peter Weibel (Director, ZKM Karlsruhe), Jean-Marie Dallet (Artist, research professor at the Université Paris 8), Liedts-Meesen Foundation, Stef Van Bellingen (Consultant for Zebrastraat – Artistic leader of WARP), Paul Dujardin (CEO & Artistic Director BOZAR), Nick Ervinck (Artist, winner of the update_2 public award), Alain Thibault (Artistic Director of Elektra), Edwin Carels (Curator New Media exhibitions), Karen Helmerson (Program Director for Electronic Media, Film & Visual Art at the New York State Council on the Arts (NYSCA)) and Ralph Dum (Scientific officer and senior expert of the European Commission).
The nominees will compete for the prize of the jury (€ 5000), the prize of the public (exhibition in an European museum) and a prize in collaboration with the STARTS-programme of the European Commission (residence in an industrial enterprise / research centre).
ZEBRASTRAAT: KNOWLEDGE CENTRE
During the last few years, Zebrastraat Ghent has developed into a stimulating knowledge centre with a strong interest in contemporary art. Every two years, update / New Technological Art Award (NTAA) tries to fill a gap in the mainstream art world by paying attention to the technological developments which impel our global culture.
NTAA selects and presents creations in which culture-forming technology plays a central role. Whether low or high tech, or intuitive or experimental, these creations always make us attentive to the innovative trends of our times. The exhibition of achievements of the selected winners is a compass that orients you to the relevant and innovative use of technology in the artistic sector.
EXHIBITION LEE LEE NAM
During the same period as update_6, Zebrastraat shows work of the South-Korean artist Lee Lee Nam. His works are located at the intersection of tradition and modernity, humanity and nature, East and West, analog and digital, originality and duplication and of neoliberalism and digital technology. Often referring to art history, he creates a dialogue between different traditional and modern media technologies and their cultural history. He lifts the barrier between diverse cultures and periods of time and questions the habits of perception and handling with art.
A catalogue will be published of the biennial update_6 and of the exhibition of Lee Lee Nam.
IN COLLABORATION WITH BOZAR
Two artworks of update_6 / NTAA will be shown at BOZAR - Centre for Fine Arts Brussels
Ravensteinstraat 23 – 1000 Brussels
Tuesday — Sunday: 10:00 — 18:00 / Thursday: 10:00 — 21:00
Opening hours Zebrastraat (Zebrastraat 32/001 – 9000 Ghent):
Wednesday – Sunday: 14:00 – 18:00
Opening hours Sint-Jacobskerk (Bij Sint-Jacobs – 9000 Ghent)
Wednesday – Saturday: 14:00 – 18:00
WINNERS NTAA 2016
Of the 3,000 visitors, 384 cast a valid vote. The following five artists received 20 votes or more:
– 1024 architecture – François Wunschel, Jason Cook, Pier Schneider (FR) – ‘WALKING Cube’ (127)
– Verena Friedrich (DE) – ‘THE LONG NOW’ (32)
– Michael Kugler (US) & Sebastian Wolf (DE) – ‘Brume’ (32)
– Bill Vorn & Louis-Philippe Demers (CA) – ‘Inferno’ (28)
– Lien-Cheng Wang (TW) – ‘Regeneration Movement’ (23)
The public award consists of the presentation of the work, in the course of next year, at a major European cultural centre or museum. This award goes indisputably to the artists collective 1024 architecture with their work ‘WALKING Cube’.
“The ‘WALKING Cube’ is an erratic structure, a simple cube brought to life by a series of mechanical agitations. When animated, it becomes a basic shape turned animal. Performing with twerks and tweaks, it grows and it shrinks, it folds and kinks. The ‘WALKING Cube’ is the result of a collaborative research exploring physical movement. With the use of air-powered mechanics a composition of diverse transformations is prepared and executed with brutal force. It’s a demonstration presenting the chaotic possibilities in the deconstruction of a common and minimal form.”
Of the eleven international judges, eight have announced their judgment. Four artists received eight points or more:
– Michael Kugler (US) and Sebastian Wolf (DE) – ‘Brume’ (14)
– 1024 architecture – François Wunschel, Jason Cook, Pier Schneider (FR) – ‘WALKING Cube’ (9)
– Bill Vorn & Louis-Philippe Demers (CA) – ‘Inferno’ (8)
– Quadrature – Jan Bernstein, Juliane Götz, Sebastian Neitsch (DE) – ‘Satelliten’ (8)
The jury award thus goes to Michael Kugler (US) and Sebastian Wolf (DE) – ‘Brume’, who are awarded with the price of 5,000 EUR.
“Inspired by an encounter with dense, low-hanging mist in a natural landscape, fog emerges and self-organizes on the surface of a sculptural element, congealing with light into an elusive strata. The viewer becomes a catalyst for disturbances, revealing the spatial and temporal volatility of this phenomenon.
‘Brume’ operates in the margins between ubiquity and the finite, symmetry and the amorphous, transience and permanence; a gesture and poetic reflection on the paradox of immateriality.”
The artists received a positive appreciation from four different judges. The proposed work responds to the requirements of the competition and its rules concerning the aesthetic use of new technologies, in response to contemporary values.
Award in collaboration with the STARTS-program of the European Commission
This award, consisting of a residence at an industrial enterprise or research centre, goes to the project ‘Growing Geometries (Tattooing Mushrooms)’ by Theresa Schubert (DE).
“As an artistic research project, ‘Growing Geometries (tattooing mushrooms)’ investigates how processes inscribed into biological organisms can be used to create art – or more general a creative output.
By using fungi membrane the artist studied the topology of mushrooms growths and showed how geometries can change naturally. The fungus is, therefore, not only the artist’s canvas, but also an artist itself.”