The Grid is incorporating art-thinking into the development of new technologies, jump-starting a conversation between artists, technologists, and policy makers from Europe, Silicon Valley and beyond.
Technological innovation has ripple effects throughout the entire world, dominating our lives in positive, and often negative ways. Society nowadays focuses on the destructive sides of technological progress.
Initiating a pioneering experiment, placing artists within research and development teams in Silicon Valley, The Grid is investigating if art-thinking can humanise technology, influence design processes, and anticipate destructive impacts. The project team is also organising multiple events in the San Francisco Bay area, Washington D.C. and New York, including workshops, conferences, and media art exhibitions. All activities build on the findings of an investigation published in the Art + Tech Report of 2019.
Nodes - Art + Tech Encounters
A series of monthly talks aiming to bring together artists and technologists, scholars and researchers, from both the USA and Europe to engage in a dialogue about the potential and the necessity of interdisciplinary collaboration. By exploring these intersections further, the Nodes exchange about its rich and complex history of mutual influence, and offer insight into the nature of these intersections. The final edition of 2020 on 11 December (at 7 pm CET) will include the launch of the research “The Grid Art + Tech Report 2020”.
The Grid: Exposure - Art + Tech + Policy Days
The Grid: Exposure - Art + Tech + Policy Days:: a major art + tech showcase in Silicon Valley in September 2020. Tthe virtual festival offers different formats of content creation: workshops, panels, live performances, and community outreach, themed Blurred Borders.
Adding the policy component to the art + tech mix further strengthened The Grid’s positioning within the art, tech, and regulatory spheres and broadened its visibility and influence among policy makers and tech partners.
Exposure - Art + Tech + Policy Days explores innovative ways to reconnect the world in our current state of isolation and showcases the vast creative potential of Silicon Valley, while engaging in a dialogue with the local tech industry, and policy makers from Brussels and California on such topics as AI and creativity, reimagining tech regulation, and the creation of new digital communities around the world.
Adding the policy component to the art + tech mix further strengthened The Grid’s positioning within the art, tech, and regulatory spheres and broadened its visibility and influence among policy makers and tech partners. The programme included 26 events with 100+ speakers/ panelists from 12 countries, co-curated by 16 partner organizations over the course of 4 days. All panels and showcases can be rewatched on The Grid’s YouTube channel.
The Solidarity Grid is an international solidarity raiser initiated and led by The Grid in support of the local art scene in the San Francisco Bay Area, hit by the coronavirus crisis. 100% of the donated proceeds will be distributed among local art institutions.
The eVe Award honours outstanding collaborative projects at the intersection of art and ttechnology that have successfully implemented art thinking in tech development processes. An Open Call for the award seeks to highlight looks for artistic collaborations and artworks that repurpose technologies from their intended applications and fill them with new meaning.
The award seeks projects that uncover technology’s hidden strengths, point to unforeseen outcomes, and open up new perspectives, while also acknowledging its downsides and unintended consequences. The eVe Award will be awarded during the South-by-South-West conference in March 2021.
The project fills a virtual stakeholder map, bringing artists, technologists, cultural organisations and tech companies together. On this map, every stakeholder is visualized with a colour-coded dot, equally sized for e.g. both tech giants and individual artists. Everyone in art + tech is encouraged to #GetOnTheGrid, and to contribute to the growth of the network.
The Grid as European Space of Culture
The project was seen by the selection committee as considerably relevant to the global context and by extension, relevant to the local one since this particular local context is quite global. The proposal was well elaborated and the committee saw the project as an answer to a ‘silent war’ between tech and art. The committee acknowledged the need to support the artists, which Europe has a duty to support.
The committee saw potential in the strategic dialogue and partnerships the project entails, bringing together people from both worlds, helping to create a common language, and in doing so, innovative solutions to various (ethical) questions.