The White Aphroid Award is presented for the first time this year. At the MIG 21 exhibition and KIBLIX-MFRU 2016 festival platform, the jury selected from a total of over 70 national and international individual participants and collectives. The Expert Commission Group (the jury) selected 11 finalists in the category of artistic achievement and 6 in the category of educational achievement.
The nominees in the category of artistic achievement: • AES+F (RU) • Herlinde Koelbl (DE) • Bureau d’Etudes (FR) • Adela Jušić & Andreja Dugandžić (BA) • Brigitta Zics (HU/UK) • Ale de la Puente (MX) • Špela Petrič (SI) • Robertina Šebjanič (SI) • Jusuf Hadžifejzović (BA) • Tina Dobrajc (SI) • Marko Brecelj (SI)
AES+F (Russia) In the age of enlightenment, the intellect was given more weight than the body, and logical constructs began to be considered as preeminent in comparison to human emotion. In that period, images and narratives examing the “World Upside Down”, as well as concepts of comedy and the fool, arose. The group takes direct reference to the topic of the “World Upside Down”. As a result the perversion of reality becomes visible.
Herlinde Koelbl (Germany) One of her works portrays a refugee who is wearing nothing but a thermo-blanket on his body. This golden blanket attracts our attention. Clothes make the man, one could say, but there is no smile on this man’s face. What ultimately makes a man a king is not the gold, but his being, his personality. He is himself wherever he is.
Bureau d’Etudes (France) The Paris-based artists Léonore Bonaccini and Xavier Fourt are the cofunders of the collective Bureau d'études. For the last several years, this French group has been producing cartographies of contemporary political, social and economic systems. The visual analysis of transnational capitalism is based on extensive research and is presented in the form of large-sized murals. The artists show through this mapping process the way power is distributed in the world. They show links between powerful groups, thus pointing to the intense links between big corporations and politics. Adela Jušić & Andreja Dugandžić (Bosnia and Herzegovina) At first sight everything seems homely, but this is deceiving. The embroidered cloth is highly political, a form of communication between women in resistance. Throughout the history, the private sphere, a “woman’s place” is a place of subversive power – a place where important political messages are being created, told, memorized, written, coded, hidden, then transmitted in bread, hair, clothes, embroidery, from place to place and from mouth to mouth. From one place to another. “Illegal” recreates histories of women’s resistance.
Brigitta Zics (Hungary / UK) This Hungarian born media artist brings a strong interdisciplinary approach to digital practice with a focus on experience-based design and the exploration of new interaction paradigms through innovative practices that generate new fields of knowledge. Her interactive video installation includes somatic and multimodal interfaces, data visualization and documentation on her recent work entitled “Eye Resonator”, which is installed in a compelling ambiance of a former power plant, an art deco building in Budapest, providing an immersive sensual experience engaging the imagination and emotions of the viewer.
Ale de la Puente (Mexico) This video, entitled Nuclear Cartographies, presents the gentle movements of styrofoam that gives the viewer the impression of light movements of possible continents, a basic understanding of changing, migrating and fragile nature of our human environment. Ale de la Puente is an industrial designer, goldsmith and boat builder, an artist and poet, a teacher and a curator. Her work deals with notions of time-space and memory through a continuous construction of poetic relations between the interior/exterior and the experiences given by space and time. Her practice combines conceptualism and multimedia, technology and science, and reveals a meticulous, or even ritualistic process, with subtle and simple objects emerging from the apparently unknown.
Špela Petrič (Slovenia) In a poetic and at the same time concrete (biologically tested and approved) way this work, entitled Phytoteratology, assumes the idea of a symbiotic way of living, between humans and plants, animals and humans, humans and humans. She unveils the hidden life of biological processes inside a temporary lab, making them visible via an analogue presentation (images reflected on the walls through glass lenses) in order to understand the relationships occurring on micro-levels, out of the reach of our sight.
Robertina Šebjanič (Slovenia) 15-channel underwater recordings were taken at 5 different busy harbour locations around Europe to create this work. The work is concerned with questioning the dichotomies of pure and polluted, of isolated versus merged, and introduces the idea of reconciliation, which may be rephrased as follows: if we are many, then pollution is our normal condition; it is the interactions that make us migrate, and change, in a quest for underwater silence.
Jusuf Hadžifejzović (Bosnia and Herzegovina) In his historical artwork "Fear of Drinking Water", Jusuf Hadžifejzović approaches the topic of migration in a personal way, from the social context of the former Yugoslavia, examining problems of religion, ideology and politics. The message behind his artwork is a powerful and universally understandable one. The performance carries a strong political charge regarding the civil war in the former Yugoslavia. Throwing darts at the photograph depicting his family members and friends, i. e. using them as a target, introduces a consideration of the issue of homicide.
Tina Dobrajc (Slovenia) In her paintings the young Slovenian artist Tina Dobrajc represents the inner struggle of the process finding the steady shapes of her identity through confronting the social ambiance where tradition, religion and everyday rituals determine the female position in the community. Her paintings are charged with emotions, she explicitly represents the naked female body wearing only the signs of folkloric traditions. The narrative and sometimes surrealistic character of her imagination incorporates elements from vernacular spiritualism, images that show the close ties between the human and nature and reveal the confusion in this time of shifting traditional values.
Marko Brecelj (Slovenia) This site-specific, social purpose artwork is a direct real time intervention into public space. The artist performs a cooking performance in the streets, in the close vicinity of a rubbish bin. He is offering food to people who are passing by, but also barbed wire. This is a socially notable work, as it is involved with social conversations created by the artist himself in the live site, examining borders, restrictions and yet sharing this discourse into wider public.
The nominees in the category of educational achievement 1. Trbovlje New Media Town (TNM) 2. pETER Purg: "firstname.lastname@example.org" 3. Safe and conscious use of the internet 4. Short Video Workshop 5. Lego Robotics 6. Zavod 404 – Mladinski tehnološki center (Institute 404 – The youth technology & research center) Migration of energy
Trbovlje New Media Town (TNM) Delavski dom Trbovlje (DDT) Presentation by Andrej Uduč and Alenka Prezelj
TNM Trbovlje – New Media Town is a programme that has been co-creating for 9 years new media connections between science, technology, art and the economy throghout this city. Through its activities, TNM moves towards a comprehensive transformation of the post-industrial city of Trbovlje and its mining past. The project in the field of secondary school education – the program “New Media Technician” – aims to train and prepare students for an active and independent lifestyle at the onset of the 21st century. The programme anticipates the kind of knowledge, skills, jobs and professions that will be sought after in the future.
pETER Purg : "email@example.com" Participative (performance) lecture Univerza v Novi Gorici / University of Nova Gorica
Peter Purg is a formal educator. He teaches New Media (Art) at the Arts Academy, University of Nova Gorica. In his participative (performance) lecture he introduced issues related to the role of art in education and the idea of teaching art in a way that is artistic in itself. “A successful marriage between academia and the real world might be brought about especially by interdisciplinary collaborations, if those collaborations are conducted in a well-orchestrated and inclusive way, fostering a collective spirit and practice of participation within an individualist mainstream of social values.”
Safe and conscious use of the internet (in collaboration with Varni internet (Safe internet) educational program) Lecture by Tilen Dominko
Uncritical assessment of acquired information, naive disclosure of personal data, online violence, invasion of privacy and internet addiction are only some of the dangers that prey on young internet users. A discussion of topics that most internet users rarely think about, but which actually present an existing and current problem and are becoming a necessary part of the modern-day ICT competence: the problem of critical assessment of the information obtained through the internet, the possible consequences of inadvertent privacy protection, especially regarding online social networks, the issue of posting one's own photos, online or mobile violence, the facets of hate speech on the internet, the dangers of internet addiction, etc.
Short Video Workshop (in collaboration with the School Center Ptuj, Secondary School for Electro-technology and Computer Sciences) Mentors Franc Vrbančič, Domen Mlakar, Saša Ristov
The theme of this workshop connected art, science, and technology. With the help of available technologies – smart phones, tablets, and other devices, everyone can become an author, camera operator, and director of a short movie. The technology, indeed, is widely accesible, but this is not sufficient criteria for an aesthetic, socially and legally acceptable film. The approach to the execution of the workshop was a holistic one, and it was successfully connected to the festival theme as well.
Lego Robotics Animal migrations to different natural environments Mentor Jure Pikl, Tina Žehelj
The Lego Robotics Workshop deals with the topic of animal migrations and the changes in our natural environment. Through play (building a nd dismantling Lego bricks) and programming, the children learn about the theme by constructing and designing various settings and environments. With the help of programming, the animals come alive and begin to move, which simulates the natural processes of migration. The Lego robotics workshop was targeting the 6 to 11 age group.
Zavod 404 – Mladinski tehnološki center (Institute 404 – The youth technology & research center) Migration of energy Mentors Barbi Seme, Milan Grašič, Petra Maršič
What is the path electrons travel, and what kind of effect is created when we direct electrons to the right positions? At this workshop participants learnt about these positions, their logical connections, and discuss which of them are optimum. What do they measure, what effects do they produce, and what is the purpose of using them at all? Zavod 404 (Institute 404) is the first youth technology & research center in Slovenia and was founded with the aim of communicating technical skills to the young and inspiring them to pursue science, research, and entrepreneurship. In their workshops teams are absorbed in observing the emerging prototype, creating a new community where ideas are appreciated and true talents can evolve.
The Expert Commission Group (the jury) selected nominees and two winners of The White Aphroid Award 2016 Barnabas Bencsik / independent curator, Budapest, Hungary Ghislaine Boddington / creative director body>data>space, reader, University of Greenwich, London, United Kingdom Henriette Horny / independent curator, art critic, Vienna, Austria Sanja Kojić Mladenov / curator and director of the Museum of Contemporary Art Vojvodina, Novi Sad, Serbia Sabina Salamon / curator at the Museum of Modern and Contemporary Art, Rijeka, Croatia Rasa Smite / co-founder of E-LAB/RIXC, curator, editor and researcher, RIXC - Center for New Media Culture, Riga, Latvia