"Art's Birthday" is an annual event first proposed in 1963 by French artist Robert Filliou. He suggested that 1,000,000 years ago, there was no art. But one day, on the 17th of January to be precise, Art was born. According to Filliou, it happened when someone dropped a dry sponge into a bucket of water. Modest beginnings, but look at us now. Filliou proposed a public holiday to celebrate the presence of art in our lives. In recent years, the idea has been taken up by a loose network of artists and friends around the world. Each year the Eternal Network evolves to include new partners - working with the ideas of exchange and telecommuications-art.
Previous Art's Birthday celebrations have included audio streaming events, web-cam exchanges, telephone music, slo-scan video, fax art, and other modes of long distance communication. In 1974 (30 years ago) the Western Front celebrated its first Art's Birthday with the Decca-Dance: Art Stars in Hollywood. Artists from accross North America travelled to the splendid ballroom of the former Elk's Lodge on MacArthur Park in Hollywood to take part in a live-art stage show.
For the upcoming Art's Birthday (January 17th 2004), the Western Front is inviting artists and artist organizations to join in a simultaneous birthday bash. Events will take place over three days (the 16th through to the 18th).
Based on ideas developed during the Scrambled_Bites residency , Art's Birthday will involve data exchange between remote locations. Data collected at each location(using various sensors) will be broadcast on the Internet using the Scramble_Bites message server. This data can then be used to activate various mechanisms in the different locations.
Artists can connect to the Scrambled_Bites system in a number of ways (including using the Max Programming Language and text based systems). As the project evolves, software and hardware information will posted on the web site to help particpants develop working components and ideas.
Art's Birthday traditionally connects artists in different place and different environments. Collaborators can work from their homes, studios, performance spaces, galleries, or other environments. Projects can be large or small.
Interested artists can contact Peter Courtemanche at firstname.lastname@example.org
We have been setting up an e-mail list for all participants
Western Front Society - Media Arts Residencies
Peter Courtemanche (Director/Curator)
Devinder Agnish, Eileen Kage, Sandra Wintner (Technical Directors)
tel: (604) 876-9343
fax: (604) 876-4099
303 East 8th Avenue
Vancouver, BC, V5T 1S1