The Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb


“Histories of Post Digital: 1960s and 1970s Media Art Snapshots”

17 December 2014 – 21 February 2015

Opening 16th December 18 h, Akbank Art’s Beyoglu building, Istanbul

Curator: Ekmel Ertan

Co-curator: Darko Fritz

This exhibition aims to explore the histories of media art after the real and seemingly permanent entry of the digital into our lives. It does so beginning from the beginning and looking at the first attempts, first digital artistic products of the 1960s and 1970s. It attempts to read from the present perspective the histories that were written with each event, each research and artwork and that are part of the paradigm we live in now.

The exhibition has two main axes. The first one “9 Evenings: Theatre and Engineering” focuses on a legendary series of performances that took place at the Regiment Armory building in New York in 1966. With performances by 10 artists, 9 Evenings is a milestone in the field of art and technology, an event where many of this field’s firsts originated. The second is about the 4th and 5th exhibitions of the (New) Tendencies movement, organized in Zagreb in 1968-69 and 1973. These two vanguard exhibitions that took place in the relative periphery of Europe at an early date and the discussion they inspired meant that the computer has come of age as an artistic medium. In collaboration with the MSU - Museum of Contemporary Art Zagreb and an international network of collectors and private archives, this exhibition offers the overview of the original early digital artworks including Waldemar Cordeiro, Gustav Metzger, Vladimir Bonačić, Frieder Nake among others.

There will be first time presented computer installation with anti Vietnam war slogan Nixon Murderer conceived back in 1969 by Remko Scha. First time after 35 years will be publicly presented Mobilodrom - "a vehicle producing sounds in reaction to its environment" from 1979 by Michael Fahres, now in the form of multimedia documentation.

The Off-Line Media Space, which takes up a large section of the exhibition, will offer a wide array of resources in field of media. A large collection of books, Transmediale and Art Electronica catalogs from the last 30 years as well as entire collections of the magazines Neural and Mediamatic will be on hand here. In addition, there will be three computer stations in this space dedicated solely to the voluntary endeavour of translating the rapidly growing media archive Art and Electronic Media Online Companion of the book by Edward Shanken ( in Turkish. This is certainly not a one-way translation, it will also allow the works and events realized in Turkey to be archived in a universal manner.

The Off-Line Media Space will feature two additional events:

The Saturday Seminars will take place during the exhibition and aim to give the audience an opportunity to hear about media histories from a group of artists and researchers who actively contributed to these histories though artistic creation and writing.

The Wednesday conversations aim to deepen and broaden the conversation around specific topics and works. They will also provide an open and live resource as well as a space to work and converse.

“9 Evenings of Theatre and Engineering”

10 films, 10 artists and avant-garde performers in collaboration with 30 engineers from Bell Telephone Laboratories in New York. By Barbro Schultz Lundestam, series director and E.A.T. Julie Martin, executive producer.

John Cage Variations VII

Lucinda Childs Vehicle

Öyvind Fahlström Kisses Sweeter Than Wine

Alex Hay Grass Field

Deborah Hay Solo

Steve Paxton Physical Things

Yvonne Rainer Carriage Discreteness

Robert Rauschenberg Open Score

David Tudor Bandoneon! (a combine)

Robert Whitman Two Holes of Water-3

Digital artists, exhibited:

Marc Adrian, Jean Baptists Bedaux, Vladimir Bonačić, Frank Böttger, Jeroen Clausman, Compos 68, Waldemar Cordeiro, Charles Csuri, D. E. Evans, Michael Fahres, David R. Garrison, Hans Köhler, Auro Lecci, Robert Mallary, Jean Claude Marquette, Gustav Metzger, Tomislav Mikulić, Petar Milojević, Jorge Moscati, Frieder Nake, Georg Nees, A. Michael Noll, Ivan Picelj, Ludwig Rase, Sylvia Roubaud, Beverly Rowe, Remko Scha, Manfred Robert Schroeder, Arthur Veen, Aron Warszawski, Georg Weiss, Rolf Wölk, Edvard Zajec, Vilko Žiljak, Anton Zöttl

Documentary film: New Tendencies, 2008, directed by Vladislav Knežević, HRT, Croatian National TV.

Saturday Seminars:

20 December 2014

Darko Fritz, “Agents of Social Change in 1960s and 1970s Digital Art”

10 January 2015

Sylvie Lacerte, “9 Evenings of Engineering and Theatre”

17 January 2015

Ekmel Ertan, “Histories of Post Digital: Media Art in Turkey”

24 January 2015

Oliver Grau, “The Complex Expression of Digital Art: Media Art Histories and its Impact on Archives and Humanities”

7 February 2015

Jussi Parikka, “An Archaeological Rewiring of the Contemporary in Arts”

14 February 2015

Armin Medosch, “The Technological Unconscious and Digital Art”

21 February 2015

Christiane Paul, “Genealogies of the Digital: A ‘Post’-Critique”

Poster graphic: Fatih Aydoğdu

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