Public Netbase:
Non Stop Future

New Practices in Art and Media

Non Stop Future Cover

Editors: Branka .ur.i., Zoran Panteli. / New Media

Published 2008

Publisher: Revolver - Archiv für aktuelle Kunst

ISBN: 978-3-86588-455-8

Order at

Open Letter to the Austrian Public

Right-wing Government Targets Public Netbase

Right-wing Government Targets Public Netbase

September 2000

The individuals, initiatives, and organizations listed below hereby demand that Public Netbase, the Viennese Center for New Media, should neither be forcibly closed, nor should it be moved from its current location in the Museumsquartier. We urge the Austrian government to acknowledge Public Netbase as a pioneer in the field of new media arts and culture by enabling the organization to continue its work in the Museumsquartier.

Since its opening in 1994, Public Netbase has played an instrumental role in shaping the rapidly changing landscape of electronic culture. Under the dedicated guidance of Konrad Becker and Marie Ringler, Public Netbase has contributed both to local media culture in Vienna and to new media culture in larger European and global contexts. In addition, Public Netbase offers a unique mix of community services, including technical training, public internet access, and a sophisticated artistic program; It also produces exhibitions, organizes conferences, provides essential resources to several communities, and helps advance the culture of new media technologies by significantly contributing to the development of theoretical and practical models. Continuing to integrate these initiatives into the cultural context of the Museumsquartier would contribute tremendously to the type of cultural context and competence that will allow Austria to proceed through this new century in a manner in keeping with its rich cultural heritage.

Unfortunately, since the change in government, Public Netbase has become the target of unreasonable accusations, hidden machinations, and unwarranted attacks. The withdrawal of all federal funding, the government's effort to stop support on the regional level, and the unsuccessful but extensive investigation into alleged financial misappropriations, are clearly being enacted as a means of silencing critical voices in Austrian civil society. We find this situation to be not only shocking but also deeply distressing, considering the contributions Public Netbase has made to the local community and to the field of new media arts.

We insist that the Austrian government reconsider and clarify its cultural policy regarding Public Netbase and acknowledge its achievements. Public Netbase should be supported for the unique cultural environment it creates, and for its history of support for experimental and emerging artistic practices. Not only should Public Netbase be given consistent support, but so should those individuals and organizations participating in the impressive variety of other Austrian independent and experimental media projects that have come into being over the last decade. These projects have demonstrated that media art and network practices have a distinguished history and that they attempt to reflect the creative diversity and a broad range of critical discourse of crucial importance to the emergence of global culture. Too often, electronic time-based media has been inappropriately described as marginal, fragmented, or outside the cultural debates about creativity in the current art scene. Nothing could be further from the truth, and this is why an organization like Public Netbase has been a staunch promoter of this rich new media culture. As such, it is the responsibility and duty of the Austrian government, as the custodians of public culture, to reinstate funding for Public Netbase and facilitate their continued presence in the Museumsquartier. Anything less would be a disservice to the public and to the cultural legacy of Europe.

Alex Adriansen, Director V2, Rotterdam/Netherlands

Eric Alliez, Professeur titulaire de la Chaire d'Esthetique à l'Académie des Arts plastiques, Vienne/Austria

Eddie Berg, FACT, UK

Kristin Bergaust, Artist and Director of Media-Lab Atelier Nord, Norway

Andreas Broeckmann, Artistic Director transmediale, Berlin/Germany

Antonella Corsani, enseignant-chercheur Université de Paris/France

Critical Art Ensemble, Artist Group, USA

Amanda Crowley, Adelaide Festival of Arts, Australia

Erik Davis, Author and Contributing Editor, Wired Magazine, San Francisco/USA

Manuel DeLanda, Fellow at Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton, New Jersey/USA

Mark Dery, Author, Editor of Artbyte, New York/USA

Sara Diamond, The Banff Center, Canada

Julian Dibbell, Author, Contributing Editor at FEED Magazine, South Bend/US

Sher Doruff, Society for Old and New Media, Amsterdam/Netherlands

Timothy Duckrey, Author and Lecturer, USA

Silvia Eiblmayr, Galerie im Taxis Palais Innsbruck/Austria

Adele Eisenstein, C3 Center for Culture & Communication, Budapest/Hungary

Andrea Ellmeier, Kulturdokumentation, Vienna/Austria

Valie Export, Artist, Vienna/Austria and Academy of Media Arts Köln/Germany

Bronac Ferran, Arts Council, UK

Jim Fleming, Editor & Publisher, Autonomedia, New York/USA

Vera Frenkel, Ontario/Canada

Tomas Friedmann, Literaturhaus Salzburg, Austria

Martin Fritz, Curator EXPO 2000 (In Between), Hannover/Germany

Matthew Fuller, Lecturer in Media, Communications and Culture at Middlesex University, working with the artists' collective Mongrel, UK

Alex Galloway,, New York/USA

Gabriele Gerbasits, IG Kultur Österreich, Vienna/Austria

Lizbeth Goodman, Director of The Institute for New Media, Performance Research School of Performing Arts - University of Surrey/UK

Franz Graf, Professor Academy of Fine Arts, Vienna/Austria

Reinhold Grether, Dr, Netscientist University Konstanz/Germany

Henning Gruner, Kunsthaus Tacheles/Berlin

Cees J. Hamelink, Professor of International Communication, University of Amsterdam/Netherlands

Michael Haneke, Regisseur, Austria

Honor Harger, Tate Modern, London/UK

Lisa Haskel, Media Art Projects, UK

Perry Hoberman, Artist, teaches at the School of Visual Arts, New York/USA

Danny Holman, No D Media Lab, Prague/Czech Republic

John Hopkins, Media Lab - University of Art and Design, Helsinki/Finland

Erkki Huhtamo, Professor UCLA, Dept. of Design, Finland

Elfriede Jelinek, Schriftstellerin, Wien/Austria

Michael Joyce, Writer and Professor of Electronic Literature, New York/USA

Eric Kluitenberg, Media Theorist and Curator New Media, de Balie - Center for Culture and Politics, Amsterdam/Netherlands

Knowbotic Research, Artist Group, Germany

Piotr Krajewska, WRO Center for Media Art, Wroclaw/Poland

Arthur and Marilouise Kroker, Editors CTHEORY, Boston, Massachusetts/USA

Spela Kucan, Ljudmila - Ljubljana Digital Media Lab, Slovenia

Violetta Kutlubasis-Krajewska, WRO Center for Media Art, Wroclaw/Poland

Herbert Lachmayer, Leiter der Meisterklasse für Experimentelle Visuelle Gestaltung, Universität für künstlerische und industrielle Gestaltung, Linz/Austria

Jacques Le Rider, Ecole pratique des Hautes Etudes, Section des sciences historiques et philologiques, Sorbonne, Paris/France

Geert Lovink, Media Theorist, Canberra/Australia

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, Art and Technology Foundation, Madrid/Spain

Tapio Makela, M-cult, Finland

Gerald Matt, Kunsthalle Wien, Austria

Armin Medosch, Telepolis, London/UK

Wolfgang Modera, Ars Electronica Center, Linz/Austria

Sally Jane Norman, Directrice Générale de l'Ecole supérieure de l'image, Angoulême Poitiers/France

Robert Palmer, Director Brussels2000, Belgium

Sylvie Parent, Curator, Centre international d'art contemporain, Montréal/Canada

Ana Parga, Art and Technology Foundation, Madrid/Spain

Marko Peljhan, Project Atol, Ljubljana/Slovenia

Constance Penley, Professor and Chair Department of Film Studies University of California, USA

Miklos Peternak, Director C3 Center for Culture & Communication, Budapest/Hungary

Otto Pfersmann, Professor for Philosophy, Sorbonne/Paris

Sadie Plant, Writer, Birmingham/UK

Doron Rabinovici, Writer, Austria

Susie Ramsay, Art and Technology Foundation, Madrid/Spain

Veronika Ratzenböck, Director Kulturdokumentation, Vienna/Austria

Christian Reder, Professor University for Applied Arts, Vienna/Austria

Martin Reiter, Kunsthaus Tacheles/Berlin

RTMark, Artist Group, USA

Gerhard Ruiss, IG Autorinnen Autoren, Austria

Giaco Schiesser, Head Department New Media, University of Art and Design Zurich/Switzerland

Annette Schindler, Director Plug In, Basel/Switzerland

Burghart Schmidt, Professor for Aesthetics, University Offenbach, Germany

Christine Schöpf, Ars Electronica Center, Linz/Austria

Dieter Schrage, Museum moderner Kunst Stiftung Ludwig, Vienna/Austria

Yukiko Shikata, Curator, Japan

Rasa Smite, E-LAB Electronic Arts and Media Center, Riga/Latvia

Raitis Smits, RIXC The Center for New Media Culture, Riga/Latvia

Stahl Stenslie, Artist and Curator, Oslo/Norway

Marleen Stikker, Society for Old and New Media, Amsterdam/Netherlands

Gerfried Stocker, Ars Electronica Center, Linz/Austria

Martin Sturm, O.K Centrum für Gegenwartskunst, Linz/Austria

Janos Sugar, Media Research Foundation, Budapest/Hungary

Daniela Swarowsky, Manager of DEAF_2000 Festival / V2_Organisation Rotterdam/Netherlands

Peter Tomaz, President Association for Culture and Education, Multimedia Center KiberSRCeLab - KIBLA, Maribor/Slovenia

Toshiya Ueno, Associate Professor, Sociologist, Tokyo/Japan

Markus Wailand, Artist and Curator, Vienna/Austria

Ulrich Wegenast, Wand 5/Stuttgarter Filmwinter, Germany

Dirk de Wit, Brussels2000, Belgium

Siegfried Zielinski, Establishment Rector Academy of Media Arts, Köln/Germany

Heimo Zobernig, Artist, Vienna/Austria