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).

The award in the category ‘Digital Communities’ went to AKSHAYA (India), a large scale IT project in the Indian state of Kerala.

The winners of the Golden Nica in the category Interactive Art are Esther Polak, Ieva Auzina und RIXC - Riga Center for New Media Culture (Latvia) with the */MILKproject. This young group of artists and cultural activists deservedly wins this price for a thoughtful ‘locative’ art project that shows us spoiled city people, where the milk comes from and where it travels to. Congratulations to Riga!

In ‘Digital Musics’ (beware the plurals) Maryanne Amacher (USA) conquers the award with her sonic sculpture TEO! which probably can also be seen as an acknowledgement of life-long achievement. Anyway, it’s nice for a change that a female sound artist gets an award and not another boys' group making noises with their laptops.

After all those positive surprises it looks more like business as usual with
Benjamin Fry and Casey Reas (USA) winning the category Net Vision with their
Processing. Institutional power-play and a certain MIT agenda surely could not have played any role in that decision. What particularly is the visionary element here the jurors only will know, but yes, we do use the software here at our department.

The category u19 (for under 19 year olds) – freestyle computing went to Markus Sucher (Austria) for "Rennacs Studies". Sauseges, a.k.a. consolation prices such as ‘Awards of Distinction’ and ‘Honorary Mentions’ went to, among others, Richard Stallman’s Free Software foundation and Ubermorgen.com’s Vote-Auction project.

Reactions about the awards in the media art community so far remain muted but we will keep you up to date if and when the mudslinging starts.

Yes, they do have a proper press release but why on earth is the website programmed in .asp?

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