Stipends 2011

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Work Stipends for Media Art 2011 at the Edith Russ Site for Media Art

The awardees:

Darsha Hewitt, Canada

Ute Hörner/Mathias Antlfinger, Germany

Yunchul Kim, Corea/Germany


The Edith Russ Site for Media Art has awarded three six-months work stipends for 2011. The 10.000 € stipends are sponsored by Stiftung Niedersachsen. The advertisement was answered by 304 applications from all over the world.

Stiftung Niedersachsen sponsors the stipends at Edith Russ Site for Media Art continually since 2001. Many of the works developed in Oldenburg have been shown in international exhibitions and have been awarded various prizes.

With their support Stiftung Niedersachsen intends to encourage one of the leading sites for media art in Germany, in its highly qualitative profiling to make art creation possible and to create international networks as well as local cooperations.


The Jury:

Ursula Damm, Media artist and professor at the media faculty of the Bauhaus University in Weimar

Sabine Himmelsbach, Artistic Director of the Edith Russ Site for Media Art

Kristian Lukic, Media artist and curator at the Museum of Contemporary Art Vojvodina in Novi Sad

Lars Midbøe, Co-founder, co-director and curator of the Electrohype Biennale in Malmö, Sweden

Andrea Sick, Media scientist, curator and professor at the digital media faculty of the University for Arts in Bremen

Jury 2011 (f.l.t.r.): Joachim Werren, General Secretary of the Foundation of Lower Saxony, Sabine Himmelsbach, Ursula Damm, Andrea Sick, Kristian Lukic, Lars Midboe

Jury Statements:


Darsha Hewitt: Electrostatic Bell Choir

Darsha Hewitt impressed the jury with her easygoing directness and at the same time with her profound approach to the hardware of the media age. What convinced the jury was the clear statement as well as the playful enjoyment with which Darsha Hewitt stages situations full of ironic poetry.

She is one of the few women who employ electronics as a means of artistic expression. Darsha Hewitt’s argument is not merely playful, or an expression of cultural analysis. She does not build historical memory devices or sensors, she does not engage in media archeology or media criticism. Rather, she liberates consumer electronics from their intended applications and purposes and calls this "demystification". She recombines the individual pieces of this recycling with a world that is surprisingly unpretentious, natural and – unusual these days – spontaneous.

She treats electronic devices as if they were sculptures, interprets their concepts and their "packaging" and their physical appearance. In her installations, clunky sounds that she elicits from the devices mix with the aesthetics of now obsolete hardware, becoming a subtly enjoyable performance. The damage to our environment caused by devices of our communication culture and the conditional nature of our media aesthetics become recognizable, through the device that generates them.

Darsha Hewitt focuses on the holistic "appearance" of the central device of the age of mass media: the television. Her proposed installation for the Edith Russ Site for Media Art, Electrostatic Bell Choir, is about a side effect of cathode-ray TVs: their electrostatic charge. The switching on and off of a television triggers a "chime" that is not operated mechanically or electronically, as usually would be the case, but rather through the electrostatic charging of the screens. Deprived of their intended function, they work as a condenser or an electrical switch, an array of bells. The result is a "quasi-melodic" choir, where the mechanical and electronic ages meet, and old and new aesthetics test each other.

With her production, Darsha Hewitt promotes a holistic view of our highly technological “daily life” and thus intimates questions about sustainable lifestyles.


Ute Hörner/Mathias Antlfinger: factory ? farm

Ute Hörner/Mathias Antlfinger with their project will analyze the complex system of contemporary food production in the local context of Lower Saxony, known for their massive automated food production facilities, namely in the meat industry (also near Oldenburg).

Their focus of the analyses will be the dominant usage of technology in this production and its move towards full production automation. In their view the image of the farm today serves as a projection for an acceptable treatment of animals. This projection covers the actual context of meat production, the factory. Hörner/Antlfinger claim that in the media context this machine production can be regarded as a black box, which spits out food with always less regognizable origin(e.g. chicken breasts).

The artists will investigate the (site-specific) topic and are planning various ways of presenting it to the public such as a media installation and a symposium. The project proposal clearly shows a structured idea, and a feasible realization with the involvement of local actors. The relevance of the topic in the context of Germany is high since food production industry lacks sufficient public transparency in the wider context.

Although dealing with an important and serious topic, the project also has elements of humor and refreshing irony, which makes the work communicative and comprehensible.


Yunchul Kim: Amorphic scape

Yunchul Kim´s project Amorphic scape is an extraordinary work, but at the same time a natural step further in his art practice during the past ten years. In previous works he has involved aspects such as internal and external communication, memory and artificial organs constructed with both chemical and mechanical materials and even what he calls "metamaterials".

The project Amorphic scape aims to develop a fluid panel containing photonic crystals. This panel will then communicate with it surroundings via sensors and antennas [for input] and variations in the shades and spectrum of light [as output].

The Korean artist Yunchul Kim has shown a remarkable development moving from his background in music into his own complex universe of visual art. In this universe he explores several aspects of both new and old technology, chemistry and poetry. By utilizing his critical view, knowledge and skills he creates unique art objects in an almost alchemistic like process.

Apart from making beautiful and complex objects Yunchul Kim also makes us, the viewers, aware about perspectives of our existence as humans and our use of technology that we might too often take for granted.

In a long term perspective Yunchul Kim is not only focussing on life reflected in technology but also the classic elements Earth, Water, Fire and Air. But by making a detour via his strong focus on constructing these complex installations combining hard and soft material and intelligent content he brings us closer to the big questions close to the core that are made up of these classic elements itself, namely Life.


Past awardees of the Lower Saxony Grant for Media Art:

2020 Ayọ̀ Akínwándé (NGA), Mochu (IND), Clara Jo (USA) more...
2019 Kim Schön (USA), Mario Pfeifer (DE), Viktor Brim (DE) more...
2018 Petra Bauer (SWE), Zach Blas (USA), Daniel Jacoby (PER) more...
2017 Noor Afshan Mirza/Brad Butler (GB), Stefan Panhans (D), Shirin Sabahi (IRN) more...
2016 Doireann O'Malley (IE), Zorka Wollny (PL), Amir Yatziv (IL) more...
2015 Mahmoud Khaled (EGY), Szabolcs KissPál (HUN), Anette Rose (GER) more...
2014 Derek Holzer (US), Ivar Veermäe (EE), Emma Wolukau-Wanambwa (GB) more...
2013 Marcello Mercado (ARG), Patricia Reis (P), Hannes Waldschütz (D) more...
2012 Kerstin Ergenzinger (D), Antoine Schmitt (F), Christoph Wachter/Mathias Jud (CH/D) more...
2011 Darsha Hewitt (CDN), Ute Hörner/Mathias Antlfinger (D), Yunchul Kim (KOR/D) more...
2010 HeHe (Helen Evans / Heiko Hansen), Frankreich / Deutschland, Ralf Baecker, Deutschland, Anahita Razmi, Deutschland more...
2008 Petko Dourmana (Bulgaria), Kristin Lucas (USA), Cornelia Sollfrank (D) more...
2007 Jens Brand (D), Ellen Fellmann (D), Eddo Stern (USA/IL) more...
2006 Annina Rüst (CH), Corinna Schnitt (D), (CH/A) more...
2005 Amie Siegel (USA)
2004 Minerva Cuevas (MEX), Calin Dan (RO/NL), Martine Neddam (F/NL)
2003 Dave Allen (GB/D), Bernadette Corporation (USA/D), Naomi Ben-Shahar (ISR/USA)
2002 Johan Grimonprez (B), Dagmar Keller/Martin Wittwer (D/CH), Florian Zeyfang (D)
2001 Susanne Weirich (D) more...


Edith-Russ-Haus Awards for Emerging Media Artists of the Sparda-Bank

2015 Chris Alton (UK), Marta Popivoda (SRB) more...
2014 Adam Basanta (CA), Julian Stein (US) more...
2013 Hyun Ju Song und Mi Lyoung Bae (KR), Kuai Shen Auson Ortega (EC) more...


Exchange stipends with Digital Art Center Taipei, Taiwan:

2011 Tai-Wei Kan more...
2010 Yun-Ju Chen, Kerstin Ergenziger more...

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