In the recent decades, digital communication and technology have thoroughly spread to every field of society and human life. This also includes art, with new media, usage of electronic instruments in music, application of technology in otherwise traditional fields of art and similar phenomena growing rapidly and establishing themselves. It is easy to place this development into a more general frame of increasing importance of the rational, scientific and technological thought.
However, it is becoming increasingly evident that while the rational approach provides staggeringly efficient tools and provides answers to many questions that were previously complete mysteries, it is not a sufficient base for a balanced, happy human experience. According to us, the tools and knowledge from the rational explosion should be consciously used for exploration and advancement of other kinds of thought. As to why, firstly, as previously mentioned, the tools provided by technology are very effective and secondly, use of technology to present that which is missing highlights the imbalance.
Here we propose to undertake the above program in the field of contemporary art by establishing an international artistic exchange program between art groups that apply technology in their work and have been either consciously investigating the rational-irrational imbalance or have been fumbling in that direction. The objectives are to provide a channel for presenting such topics, to establish connections between groups working in the field, and to enable both interested young and established artists to contribute and exchange meaningful conversations about the topic.
The general concept of the program contains the exchange of ideas, artistic collaboration and inclusion of new participants. Ideas are exchanged in the form of facilitated discussions and presentations, whereas artistic collaboration takes the shape of a joint working session which results in jointly created work of art. The inclusion of new participants is achieved with apprenticeship programs and organization of bold cooperative projects.
The program is envisioned as a continuous program spanning many years. This project description describes the initial exchange, scheduled for summer of 2018, in detail. Further exchanges are planned to happen every year. Their details are fleshed out based on experience gained from the 2018 edition.
For the 2018 exchange, the two artist groups Koelse from Helsinki, Finland and Cirkulacija 2 from Ljubljana, Slovenia have been invited as the core participants. Both Koelse and Cirkulacija 2 have already accepted the invitation. Each group will host one event, called a camp, during 2018 with the other group as the attendee. Other suitable participants can be invited depending on how they fit in.
Photo: Antti Ahonen