Tuesday, 13.3.2018 – Sunday, 18.3.2018

digital spring 2018 | media art festival

TRANSHUMANISM: Updates are available

We are excited to be co-hosts of the biennial media art festival digital spring 2018,  an initiative by ARGEkultur Salzburg and subnet in cooperation with the Center for HCI, Salzburger Kunstverein, and FS1 – Freies Fernsehen Salzburg.

As part of this year’s festival program, we will host a one-day on “THE HOMO LUDENS AS A PHYSICAL-DIGITAL HYBRID” at Studio 3.


editorial digital spring 2018

Cornelia Anhaus, festival director digital spring festival


From pacemakers to better eye-sight via laser-operations, from an improved self on social media to chipped employees, from board computers to hearing implants to prostheses – one doesn’t have to be the Terminator to realize that little by little, we are all evolving into human-machines. Regardless of whether it is about providing the supposed sick or the alleged healthy with features they did not have before – shouldn’t we all be allowed to modify our bodies the way we want to? Or has capitalism finally succeeded in terms of self-optimization on all levels of being? To which extent are we in control of technology, and when does it start controlling us?
These questions are not confined to the realm of science fiction, but rather they have been troubling us in real life for almost 100 years now. In the 1920s, biologist Julian Huxley first developed a complete transhumanistic ideology, which was supposed to contribute to the ultimate triumph over the human’s fragile state through technology and progress. It shouldn’t remain unmentioned that Huxley was an advocate of eugenics, which shows another dark side of this development.
Then again, radical transhumanists predict nothing less than digital immortality. In the future, this would mean that we could be able to disperse the unity between body and soul and digitalize our abilities and our personalities. A backup of the self.

After the first successful round of the digital spring in 2016, the biennial media art festival 2018 deals with the posthuman future of the human and the increasing merging with machines. The discursive as well as artistic program investigates and presents the opportunities as well as risks, which transhumanism holds for society.
At the end of November, the jury (Cornelia Anhaus, festival management digital spring | Séamus Kealy, director Salzburger Kunstverein | Martin Murer, Senior Scientist, Center for Human-Computer Interaction, University of Salzburg | Marius Schebella, chairman subnet & Researcher MultiMediaArt, FH Salzburg) chose ten plus one projects from 34 international submissions, which are concerned with the developments and consequences of these future prospects.
For the very fist time, the open call included the possibility of a grant for media art from the province of Salzburg, which the jury awarded to the duo APNOA (Sebastian Drack and Tobias Feldmeier).

With this year’s motto, the festival team and the artists encourage you over a compact period of six days to overcome your own limits and broaden your senses, not only mentally but also physically, in a smart as well as humorous, innovative as well as impressive, poetic and aesthetic way.
Load up your mind and the rest will follow – welcome to the second digital spring in Salzburg!

Cornelia Anhaus,
festival director digital spring festival

full program of digital spring 2018


Contact: Martin Murer

Talk by Laura Devendorf: Designing Unstable Technology for Unstable Futures


Tuesday, August 22, 2017, 4pm-5pm
Center for HCI, Studio 3
Jakob-Haringer-Straße 8


Designing Unstable Technology for Unstable Futures: If there is anything we can know about the future, it is that it is unstable, uncertain, unknowable, and unpredictable. Often, the tendency when designing technologies for the future is to bring the future into the realm of human control, for instance, with bigger data or better predictive models. This talk will describe an alternative “unstable” approach to designing technological things of the future that frames instability as a resource for design, as opposed to a target for technological intervention. While instability can be uncomfortable, it also creates the capacity for hope, curiosity, and meaningful interventions in the world. It can cultivate attention outside of our human bodies and into the broader landscape of human and nonhuman forces that shape reality. By drawing from art, anthropology and engineering, unstable design looks away from instrumental or even traditional “human-centered” approaches for designing technological things, and instead, looks for moments in which technology can challenge, confront, and sensitize humans to vibrant phenomena they may otherwise look past.

Laura Devendorf develops and studies technologies that are volatile to the unpredictability of things, people, and environments. Her designs won’t make you more efficient or productive, but they will foster poetic, slow, curious, and enchanting encounters with the everyday.

Laura is an Assistant Professor in the ATLAS Institute and Department of Information Science at the University of Colorado, Boulder where she directs the Unstable Design Lab. She received her PhD at the School of Information at University of California, Berkeley and has bachelors degrees in computer science and studio art from the University of California Santa Barbara.


Contact: Martin Murer

At this year’s Alpbach Technology Symposium, Manfred Tscheligi will chair a breakout session on “Digital Futures: Design as Key to Future Digital Worlds“, which is coordinated by Martin Murer. The breakout session will be a follow-up to several previous events that the Center for HCI organised addressing the relation between design, research, and innovation (e.g., breakout sessions at the Alpbach Technology Symposium 2016 and 2011, or an expert summit in Salzburg in autumn 2015 on Rethinking Technology Innovation).

Friday, August 25, 2017 13.00 – 18.00
Hauptschule Alpbach

Digital futures: design as key to future digital worlds

The digital technologies of the future present new opportunities and challenges. We are facing critical questions of design – how do we solve problems with and for digital technologies? Engineering alone cannot answer such questions; we also need creative/scientific/artistic approaches. What will these approaches look like? What are the digital worlds of the future? What meaning can we already discern from the ongoing intensive merging of physical and digital worlds and the transgressive behaviours that appear to be connected to this?

Digitale Zukunft: Design als Schlüssel zukünftiger digitaler Welten

Zukünftige Digitaltechnologien eröffnen neue Möglichkeiten und Herausforderungen. Aus der Sicht des Menschen stehen wir dabei vor zentralen Fragen des Designs – Wie können wir Probleme mit und für digitale Technologien lösen? Engineering alleine kann solche Fragen nicht beantworten, es braucht gestalterische/wissenschaftliche/künstlerische Herangehensweisen. Was macht diese Herangehensweisen aus? Welche Kompetenzen braucht es, um mit Ungewissheiten umgehen zu können? Was sind digitale Welten der Zukunft? Was bedeuten die intensive Vermischung von physischen und digitalen Welten und die diesbezüglichen Grenzübertritte?



Wilfried Haslauer, Landeshauptmann Land Salzburg



Manfred Tscheligi, Professor of Human-Computer Interaction, Center for Human-Computer Interaction, University of Salzburg; Head, Center for Technology Experience, AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH, Vienna



Laura Devendorf, Assistant Professor, ATLAS Institute, University of Colorado, Boulder (CO)

">Lone Koefoed Hansen, Associate Professor in Digital Design and Aesthetics, School of Communication and Culture, Aarhus University, Aarhus

Head of Management Innovation, SIGMATEK Group, Lamprechtshausen and CEO SIGMATEK Automation Co Ltd. Ningbo/China

Hilmar Linder, Head of Degree Programme MultiMediaTechnology, Salzburg University of Applied Sciences, Puch bei Hallein

Petra Sundström, Director Idea and Innovation Management, Husqvarna Group, Stockholm

Andrea Wald, Programme Manager for Arts-Based Research, FWF – Austrian Science Fund, Vienna



Martin Murer, Senior Scientist, Center for Human-Computer Interaction, University of Salzburg

Contact: Martin Murer

subnetAIR Lucie Strecker, together with her collaborator Klaus Spiess, is resident artist at the Center from July to August 2017. They work on projects around wetware, biofacts, and new interfaces/relations to non-human (yet biological) actors. Get to know them during the “meet the artist” talk.

Wednesday, July 12, 18:00

Studio 3, Center for Human-Computer Interaction
Jakob-Haringer-Straße 8, Techno 5
5020 Salzburg

further information: http://luciestrecker.com/

Contact: Martin Murer

subnetAIR Young Suk Lee is resident artist at the Center from May to July 2017. Get to know her during her “meet the artist” talk. She will give a general overview as well as insights into her current project, the interactive wig.

Wednesday, May 24th, 17:00

Studio 3, Center for Human-Computer Interaction
Jakob-Haringer-Straße 8, Techno 5
5020 Salzburg

“My artwork employs a variety of themes focusing on nature, ecosystems, and the connection between life forms. As human beings an inescapable part of life is our interaction with other creatures. The fundamental theme in my work concerns how ecosystems, societies, and life itself form an interconnected web where the disturbance of any part affects everything. My art work do not describe the real environment in a realistic sense. Instead, I seek to depict ecosystems and environments in a surreal manner. The depictions of these entities and environments stem from personal, subjective impressions and therefore contain highly imaginative elements.” from Young Suk Lees’s artist statement.


Contact: Martin Murer

subnetAIR: Meet the artist

Wednesday, March 8th 19:00

Studio 3
Center for Human-Computer Interaction
Universität Salzburg
Jakob-Harnger-Straße 8 / Techno 5
5020 Salzburg

Language will be German or English, depending on audience preference.

Antoni Raijekov is an interdisciplinary artist working in the field of music, theatre and digital arts born in Sofia, Bulgaria and currently living in Vienna, Austria. He has a master degree in theatre directing and bachelor in drama acting at the National Academy for Theater and Film Arts “K. Sarafov” (Sofia, Bulgaria).
He studied musical improvisation at the Vienna Konservatorium (Austria) and computer programming at LearningTree(London, UK) and was an IT consultant for the United Nations Office, Vienna. He is a co-founder of the vienna based New Media label THIS.PLAY, focused on interactive technologies and art, and guest lecturer in Interactive Media in the University for Applied Science, St.Pölten, Austria and Academy for Fine Arts (Digital Arts MA program) – Sofia, Bulgaria. He is a fellow at Akademie Schloss Solitude – Stuttgart, Germany and Akademie Hallein – Hallein, Austria, For his works, he obtained awards, fellowships and grants from ProHelvetia, Soros Foundation, ComputerSpace, Ministry of culture – Bulgaria, BKA – Austria, Akademie Schloss Solitude, Akademie Hallein, among others.

In 2015 Intel contacted the artists Antoni Rayzhekov and Katharina Köller and commissioned an audiovisual performance using the micro computer INTEL® EDISON. Take a look, find out more on somaphonics.com.

Here is a short video about what Antoni did back then at the Schmiede in Hallein: Motherbox

Contact: Martin Murer

subnetTALKs are open dialogues. We invite artists and researchers to talk about the intersections between art, science and technology. An impulse talk sets the stage for the discussion that follows. subnetTALK is recorded and broadcasted by FS1. Rüdiger Wassibauer moderates the dialogue. subnetTALK is a Cooperation between the Center for Human-Computer Interaction and subnet.

since 2016: bit.ly/subnettalk
2011 to 2016: vimeo.com/subnettalk

Studio 3 can be found in the Techno 5 building, Jakob-Haringer-Straße 8, and accessed through the side entrance down in the parking lot. The first door to your right opens to a long hallway that leads to Studio 3.

Find the exact dates and times below, and mark your calendar!




27.02.2019, 18.00, Center for HCI, Studio 3

Karin Ferrari

The iPhone Xs – A Techno-Magical Portal


The new iPhone… It’s not what you think it is… Karin Ferrari looked deep into the secret symbolism of the advertising campaign for the iPhone Xs. Her new short mystery documentary shows: It’s alive. And it is not entirely of terrestrial origin. These startling revelations are just the beginning of the strangest details to emerge from Ferrari’s alternative reading of iconic images and the curious insights they offer into our collective technological imagination – that the award winning artist, Karin Ferrari, shares for the first time at subnetTALK. bit.ly/imagical

Karin Ferrari uses images from pop culture in order to investigate the present. Inspired by internet subcultures that try to understand ‘what’s really going on?!1!’ Ferrari’s video series DECODING THE WHOLE TRUTH claims to reveal hidden messages in music videos, news intros and advertising. Her work has been shown internationally in museums and art centres, such as the Belvedere 21 in Vienna, Moscow Biennale for Young Art, Antarctica Biennale, The Wrong – Digital Biennale, Art Omi New York. karinferrari.com 

13.03.2019, 18.00, Center for HCI, Studio 3

Martin Retschitzegger

Immersive Räume


Das Haupttätigkeitsfeld von m box sind große Produktionen wie immersive räumliche Filme und Inszenierungen für ungewöhnliche Formate. Gerade Industriekunden wie Mercedes und Telekom oder die Expo setzen bei Präsentationen und Messeauftritten interaktive Installationen mit den aktuellsten medialen Technologien ein. Das forciert die Entwicklung und das Programmieren von aufwendigen interaktiven Prototypen, Installationen und Exponaten. Die Inspirationen für die Projekte kommen häufig aus den Bereichen der Kunst und Wissenschaft und in Martins Fall auch aus der Technoszene. Neben dem kommerziellen Einsatz ist es Martin Retschitzegger stets ein Anliegen das Erlernte auch in freie und künstlerische Projekt zurückzuführen. Für sein Tätigkeitsfeld betrachtet er Kreativität und Technik stets als gleichwertig und als sich gegenseitig inspirierende Faktoren.

Martin Retschitzegger ist Creative Director des Berliner Studios m box für räumliche mediale Inszenierungen und interaktive Installationen. Martin entdeckte seine Leidenschaft für den kreativen Umgang mit (vor allem) digitalen Technologien autodidaktisch als 3D-Animator und Techno-dj/producer in den frühen Neunziger Jahren in Wien, bevor er den Sprung nach Berlin wagte, wo er dann 1999 m box mitbegründete. m box arbeitet vorwiegend im Bereich des künstlerischen Umgangs mit aktuellsten Technologien, Medien sowie Inhaltsvermittlung und deren gestalterische und kommerzielle Anwendung.  http://www.m-box.de

27.03.2019, 18.00, Center for HCI, Studio 3

Robertina Sebjanic



Project Aquatocene / Subaquatic quest for serenity by Robertina Šebjanič, reflects the aural underwater acoustic environment and the sound (noise) pollution produced there by human presence. The Aquatocene explores the relationship between sound, nature and society. It encourages rethinking the (invisible) human impact on the underwater habitats. Over the last few years the artist had made a number of recordings using hydrophones in different locations around the globe. She will also present her the sound compositions. http://robertina.net/aquatocene/

Robertina Šebjanič (SLO) is international exhibited artist. Her artistic work deals with cultural, (bio)political and ecological realities of aquatic environments. With her projects she tackles the philosophical questions at the intersection of art, technology and science. Her projects are often realized in collaboration with others, through interdisciplinary and informal integration in her work. She is member of Hackteria Network and Theremidi Orchestra. http://robertina.net/


24.04. 2019, 18.00, Center for HCI, Studio 3

Matthew Mosher

Tangible Aesthetics


Throughout his art practice Matthew Mosher has invited the public to physically engage with his work using the power of human touch. Since Martin Heidegger developed his philosophy of Phenomenology, designers have applied embodiment to make their projects more meaningful and impactful. This talk will examine how strategies from tangible interaction design can be implemented within the fine arts to create moving experiences for participants, and by doing so empower people to see the world from different perspectives.

Matthew Mosher is an intermedia artist and research professor who creates embodied experiential systems. He received his BFA in Furniture Design from the Rhode Island School of Design and his MFA in Intermedia from Arizona State University. Currently, he is an assistant professor of games and interactive media at the University of Central Florida and a Fulbright Scholar in Austria. His internationally exhibited artworks bridge the physical and digital worlds by mixing computer programming, collaborative practice, and traditional sculpture processes. matthewmosher.art

subnetTALK 2018 – “MATERIAL”

Art is more than some decoratively assembled materials. But what do materials have to do with art? Materials are generally anything but obvious. This becomes especially clear when looking at Media Arts and the Maker Movement. Often, we hop from idea, to form, to the search for the right material. However, materials can also bring us to new ideas. New materials are asking to be researched and experimented with, so that we can use them sustainably and purposefully. And since this covers just about the tip of the iceberg, we will dive into Materials in 2018, before the vast spectrum of possibilities engulfs us.


04.04.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Julian Stadon (EN)

18.04.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Emanuel Gollob (DE)

06.06.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Pedro Lopes (EN)

01.09.2018, 18:00, Schmiede Hallein
Sebastian Hackenschmidt (DE)

01.09.2018, 19:30, Schmiede Hallein
Florian Kühnle (DE)

26.09.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Martin Kaltenbrunner (DE)

03.10.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Robertina Sebjanic (EN)

24.10.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Selena Savic (EN)

28.11.2018, 18.00, Center for HCI
Sigrid Brell-Cokcan (EN)


subnetTALK 2017
Rahmen und Realität – Wie der Kontext unser Schaffen beeinflusst

In 2017, subnet and the Center will organise eight subnetTALKs, seven of which will take place in Studio 3 at the Center for HCI.

Mi.22.2. — 19:00
Den Kontext bestimmen wir selbst –  Simon Schäfer
der-warst.de, schaefersimon.de 

Mi.15.3. — 19:00
Material Ecologies –  Manuel Kretzer

Mi.12.4. — 19:00
Vom Freiraum Otelo zur Unternehmung Otelo eGen – Wolfgang Mader

Mi.17.5. — 19:00
The hedonic body – framing virtuality sound-gestures, the body & post-digital culture – Werner Jauk

Sa.23.9. — TBA
The Digital in the Arts and in Exhibitions – Kathrin Wolf
Ort: auf der Schmiede Hallein, Saline, Pernerinsel.

Mi.25.10. — 19:00
Gute Kulturpolitik macht Künstler*innen glücklich – Thomas Philipp

Mi.15.11.  — 19:00
Ladies and Gentlemen we are floating in Space – Claudia Rohrmoser

Mi.29.11 — 19:00
Gestaltung als Rahmen und Spiegel unseres Handelns – Moya Hoke

Contact: Martin Murer

Schmiede is a collaborative, experimental art and technology, festival-hackathon-hybrid. With around 300 people participating annually, Schmiede hosts smiths from all over the world with all kinds of backgrounds: visual arts, sound design, programming, performance arts, sculpture, installation design – just to name a few.

Every year in September, the smiths convene for ten days in The Saline on the Pernerinsel of Hallein, Austria, with the goal to create, network and present.


Deconstructive Interactions Lab at Schmiede 2016

In 2016, the Center for HCI participated in Schmiede for the first time, organizing one of the eight ‘labs’ that support the smiths in exploring their ideas. We relocated most of our workshop tools and materials to Hallein to run the Deconstructive Interactions Lab. In this lab, we helped the smiths to take apart, hack and build interactive artefacts and to support their own projects, in an effort to revive the youthful joy of taking apart the stuff that surrounds us, to figure out how it works.

Aside from supporting the smiths of Schmiede with their project, the Center for HCI also brought four projects to Schmiede, and ran a workshop with participants and outsiders alike.


Deconstructive Workshop

Many kids enjoy taking apart the stuff that surrounds them to figure out how things work: they break open toys, disassemble kitchen appliances and dissect animals. Embedded technology gets smaller and smaller; the digital reality gets hidden as pictures behind glass; we grow up; and we tend to forget about the intimate relationships to artefacts we create through taking them apart.

At Schmiede, we organized an afternoon workshop for participants of Schmiede and the general public. With some 20 participants – children and adults – we took apart a heap of old electronics: toys, phones, cameras, radios and the like, with the goal of creating new artefacts. During the workshop, several robots were created that would take part in Hebocon. Other smiths took the workshop as an opportunity to work on their own projects. The resulting traces of the workshop were displayed during the Schmiede Werkschau at the end of the festival.

The Deconstructive Workshop was part of a larger research effort into the facets of De-Constructive Interaction Design.


Reign in Blood

Reign in Blood is an interactive game installation that is based on interacting with fluids, e.g., blood, on a touchscreen. In this co-located two player game, the players take the role of warlords on a battlefield, aiming to fight the other player’s soldiers. Our design goal was to intentionally break touch-based interactions for gameplay purposes in order to make the game increasingly harder to play when in-game casualties emerged. The making of this project was driven by exploring fluids (e.g., blood) as an interaction design material and further, using the technical shortcoming of consumer hardware as a design resource.

The focus of this project was to explore how we could design for in-game events resulting in real-world consequences for the player, and further bridging the digital/physical divide by exploring alternative forms of interacting with existing technology. In its core, the project utilises metaphorical gameplay to question the ascribed meaning of blood on an interactional layer.


Deconstructing Perspectives

One of the best things of Schmiede is that just by virtue of being there, you can assume that most smiths are down to try weird, experimental setups – and that’s exactly what many smiths did during the showing of Deconstructing Perspectives at the final Werkschau of Schmiede. They hoisted a heavy backpack on their backs, put on some VR goggles and completed an obstacle course, all the while being shown only disembodied perspectives: a high, FPS game-like perspective, a side perspective, and an ant’s perspective. That is to say: while wearing the VR headset, smiths did not have the normal, first-person perspective that your eyes would normally provide. Instead, they had to acquaint themselves with these new perspectives, while managing several exercises in an obstacle course.

The goal of Deconstructing Perspectives was to explore the way in which people appropriate the viewpoints, how they adjust their movements and how they deal with obstacles from an alternative perspective.


The String Quartet

The String Quartet project focused on a methodological way to deconstruct the building processes of different projects at Schmiede. In building a physical frame (i.e., 3D Cartesian grid) to document the processes of creating five Schmiede projects (i.e., Reign in Blood, Deconstructive Perspectives, Sensory Deprivation (not described here), and the Deconstructive Workshop) over the period of 10 days, the string quartet served as a temporal and physical documentation and representation of a diverse set of creative practices.

While observing the artists during the entire process of building their installations and documenting critical points in the development with a camera, the artists were asked to interrogate their experiences within their projects on a 3-D Cartesian grid. This grid represented dimensions from divergence to convergence (x-axis) and individual to collaborative (y-axis), allowing the artists to indicate how divergent/convergent and individual/collaborative they have been working on a specific day on their projects.

To map these experiences, the artists were given LED light strips (each project was assigned a specific color) to interrogate their state for each day in the grid. Furthermore, print-outs of the taken pictures of the projects were attached to these LED strips to add additional contextual information and to provide a sense of the different working practices within these projects. Finally, after the 10 days the full process documentation of the five projects was shown to others at the Werkschau as an installation (interactive) light installation.


More about Schmiede

Curious? Convinced? More info about Schmiede can be found here.

Contact: Martin Murer

Continuing the collaboration between subnetAIR and the Center for Human-Computer Interaction we are happy to announce a conversation with Kanari Shirao.

September 1, 2016 19.30 | Sigmund-Haffner-Gasse 18
Meet the Artist: Kanari Shirao (JP/DE)

Kanari Shirao is a sound and media artist. After graduating in 2009 in Computer Music and Acoustic Design at Tokyo Kunitachi College of Music, he chose to settle in Berlin for further studies.  In 2015 he graduated from Berlin University of Art “Sound Studies”, supervised by world world famous artists such as Hans Peter Kuhn, Robert Henke and Sam Auinger.

Kanari Shirao’s artistic practice is conceptually based on the exploration of everyday life phenomenons, for which he seeks an acoustic translation. His work distinguishes itself by its minimalist reduction of the visual elements, in favour of their sonic counterparts. His work has been exhibited in prestigious institutions like Haus der Berliner Festspiele, Berlin, DE, during the Crescendo music festival, Berlin, DE or the Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto, JP.

More information about Kanari: http://kanarishirao.com

Contact: Martin Murer

We are happy to announce that we have subnetAIRs 2017. Thank you very much for the many applications we have received for 2017. We are very excited about the continuously increasing quality and internationalisation. It is a pity that we only have three slots. So it is a pleasure to announce that the city of Salzburg will enable us  to offer an extra slot for December 2017, more soon.

The subnetAIR jury has chosen three projects from different fields of material art research that fulfill our expectations of playful exploration. Each future resident represents an understanding of material in its very own different form.

One sophisticated look at bioengineering and performance: Lucie Strecker
One eerie wearable approach to the fields of the uncanny valley: Young Suk Lee
And one acoustic exploration of the relation between bodies and instruments: Anthony Rayzhekov

Source: subnetAIR: Artists 2017 » subnet

MediaART Residency & Grant: Danny Bracken

From the subnet.AIR Jury decision:

With his convincing portfolio Danny Bracken demonstrates an innovative approach to digital media  and a playful use of materials in his space-encompassing installations. His application has therefore been able to stand out amongst the other strong applications. Bracken’s project is also in line with the Material.Research.Art – focus of subnetAIR and promises a fruitful collaboration with the Center for Human-Computer Interaction.
The MediaART Residency & Grant is a one-month project development scholarship for artists from the field of media art and experimental media.
MediaART Residency & Grant is a cooperation between the Artist-in-Residence-Programm der Stadt Salzburg and subnet

Source: subnet » mediaART: Jury decision

Contact: Martin Murer