Austrian Foreign Ministry and Ars Electronica Strive for Artistic Freedom

Lifestyle & TravelCulture ♦ Published: May 30, 2022; 23:53 ♦ (Vindobona)

Austrian Foreign Ministry and Ars Electronica created a Virtual Space for artistic freedom. In times of crisis, there is clear support for artists and artistic freedom.

The Ars Electronica Center by night in Linz, Upper Austria. / Picture: © Wikimedia Commons / Walter Isack(Isiwal) / CC BY-SA (

The Austrian Foreign Ministry and Ars Electronica want to send a clear sign of support for artists and created a Virtual Space for artistic freedom.

With the "State of the ART(ist)" call for proposals, the Austrian Foreign Ministry and Ars Electronica are now creating a virtual art gallery to enable artistic freedom to unfold within a secure framework.

The aim is to support artists in Ukraine and around the world for whom a commitment to peace, freedom and self-determination is not possible locally or is possible only under great threat.

The Russian war of aggression on Ukraine calls for a clear commitment and a lived solidarity with artists and cultural workers who are unable or barely able to visibly pursue their activities due to political or social circumstances.

"2022 welcomes Ars Electronica to 'Planet B.' A rather large continent of this artist-designed planet will be devoted to the question of how we can live together peacefully and respectfully across borders of states, cultures, languages, religions and genders. The linchpin of this debate will be the virtual exhibition 'State of the ART(ist)", says Martin Honzik, Managing Director Ars Electronica Festival and CCO of Ars Electronica.

All submitted State of the ART(ist) projects will be presented online as part of the Ars Electronica Festival 2022 "Welcome to Planet B: A different life is possible. But how?" and thus made visible to a worldwide audience. Furthermore, an international jury from the fields of art and culture will select several works and use them to curate three virtual exhibitions that are related to this year's festival motto.

Austria's Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg also emphasized the importance of the project and assured his support, "With State of the ART(ist), we are creating an instrument for artists around the world that makes visible what their respective circumstances would otherwise not allow. In doing so, we are setting another example for the universal right to freedom of opinion and artistic expression. Together with the leading festival in the field of art, new technologies and society, we are creating a novel initiative to support and make visible suppressed art. Because this is also what Austrian foreign cultural work stands for."

Located in the Ars Electronica Center, which houses the Museum of the Future, in the city of Linz. Ars Electronica's activities focus on the interactions between art, technology and society.

Ars Electronica is a festival for the presentation and promotion of art in close connection with digital technology and social issues, which takes place annually in Linz, Upper Austria.

The Ars Electronica Festival, the cornerstone of Ars Electronica, has been held annually in Linz since 1979, accompanied by a major media response.

It is the most important international festival of digital art, presenting trends and long-term developments in a future-oriented manner in the form of artistic works, discussion forums and scientific support.

Federal Ministry for Europe Integration and Foreign Affairs

Ars Electronica