This year's conference theme is "Do Androids Sleep With Electric Sheep?" Critical Perspectives on Sexuality and Pornography in Science and Social Fiction:
Taking up where the successful conference in autumn 2007 left off, this year's Arse Elektronika stands under the motto "future" -- and the ways in which the present sees itself reflected in it. Maintaining a broadened perspective on technical development and technology while also putting special emphasis on its social implementation, this year's conference focuses on Science and Social Fiction.XXBN's conference discussion will include the Prixxx Arse Elektronika 2008 Awards Ceremony results.
The genre of the "fantastic" is especially well suited to the investigation of the touchy area of sexuality and pornography: actual and assumed developments are frequently depicted positively and approvingly, but just as often with dystopian admonishment. Here the classic, and continuingly valid, themes of modernism represent a clear link between the two aspects: questions of science, research and technologization are of interest, as is the complex surrounding urbanism, artificiality and control (or the loss of control). Depictions of the future, irregardless of the form they take, always address the present as well. Imaginations of the fantastic and the nightmarish give rise to a thematic overlapping of the exotic, the alienating and, of course, the pornographic/sexual as well.
Johannes Grenzfurthner is an artist, curator, director and writer with numerous published essays and articles on contemporary art, science and philosophy. He holds a professorship for art theory and art practice at the University of Applied Sciences, Graz, Austria and is the founder of monochrom, an internationally acting art and theory group.
As always, you are invited to participate in the show; calls welcome at 646.200.3136.