ZKM | Center for Art and Media KARSLRUHE GERMANY

October 27, 2015 by Laura Gomez

 

ZKM | Center for Art and Media has become a cultural institution unique throughout the world. It is a house for all media and genre, a house for both spatial arts, such as painting, photography, and sculpture as well as time-based arts, such as film, video, media art, music, dance, theater, and performance.

ZKM was founded as a museum in 1989 with the mission to perpetuate classical arts in the digital age, which is why it is occasionally referred to as “Electronic or Digital Art Bauhaus,” an expression that can be traced back to Heinrich Klotz. Beyond that, ZKM houses institutes and laboratories that carry out scientific research, development, and production.

Alongside the classic guiding principle of a museum, namely, to save artworks from disappearing, ZKM has also taken on the task of creating conditions under which works of art arise;
for one, by way of guest artists, and for another, by way of the staff members. For this reason, it is called a center and not a museum.

With the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Media Museum, the Media Library, the Institute for Visual Media, the Institute for Music and Acoustics, and the Laboratory for Antiquated Video Systems, the ZKM has available a wide range of possibilities for developing interdisciplinary projects and international collaboration.
In its work, the ZKM brings together production and research, exhibitions and events, and mediation and documentation. The ZKM is thus capable of a suitable response to the
rapid development of information technology and transformation of social structures. As “Mecca of Media Arts” (Peter Weibel), the ZKM deals in theory and practice with innovations
in communication and information technologies, the subsequently unleashed options for art, and the social transformations thereby set in motion.

By combining archive and collections, exhibitions and events, research and production, the ZKM is able to aptly illustrate art’s development in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries;
no least due to the symposia and other platforms for theoretical discourse between philosophy, science, art, politics, and the economy that accompany its collection, exhibition, and research activities.

The ZKM | Center for Art and Media was founded in 1989 by the city of Karlsruhe and the state of Baden-Württemberg as a public foundation.
This unique cultural institute was called to life with the constitution of the board of trustees and the appointment of Professor Heinrich Klotz (1935–1999) as founding director.

The idea of founding an institution uniting artistic concepts with future-oriented technologies dates from an initiative by the city of Karlsruhe Department of Arts and Culture in 1984.
In 1986, representatives of local politics, the university, the University of Music Karlsruhe, the nuclear research center, and various other institutions, along with representatives of the Karlsruhe art scene, formed »Projektgruppe ZKM.

The ZKM is a site of scientific and artistic research. Here, scientists and artists from around the world find unique conditions to carry out interdisciplinary, theoretical
and practical projects, and present them to a broad public. Through international collaborations with universities, museums, publishing houses, ensembles,
and festivals, the ZKM not only participates in cutting-edge developments, but also sets new priorities that are acknowledged and taken up throughout the world.

ZKM | Center for Art and Media has become a cultural institution unique throughout the world. It is a house for all media and genre, a house for both spatial arts, such as painting,
photography, and sculpture as well as time-based arts, such as film, video, media art, music, dance, theater, and performance.

ZKM was founded as a museum in 1989 with the mission to perpetuate classical arts in the digital age, which is why it is occasionally referred to as “Electronic or Digital Art Bauhaus,” an expression that can be traced back to Heinrich Klotz. Beyond that, ZKM houses institutes and laboratories that carry out scientific research, development, and production. Alongside the classic guiding principle of a museum, namely, to save artworks from disappearing, ZKM has also taken on the task of creating conditions under which works of art arise; for one, by way of guest artists, and for another, by way of the staff members. For this reason, it is called a center and not a museum.

With the Museum of Contemporary Art, the Media Museum, the Media Library, the Institute for Visual Media, the Institute for Music and Acoustics, and the Laboratory for Antiquated Video Systems, the ZKM has available a wide range of possibilities for developing interdisciplinary projects and international collaboration. In its work, the ZKM brings together production and research, exhibitions and events, and mediation and documentation. The ZKM is thus capable of a suitable response to the rapid development of information technology and transformation of social structures. As “Mecca of Media Arts” (Peter Weibel), the ZKM deals in theory and practice with innovations in communication and information technologies, the subsequently unleashed options for art, and the social transformations thereby set in motion.

By combining archive and collections, exhibitions and events, research and production, the ZKM is able to aptly illustrate art’s development in the twentieth and twenty-first centuries;
no least due to the symposia and other platforms for theoretical discourse between philosophy, science, art, politics, and the economy that accompany its collection, exhibition and research activities.

ZKM | Institute for Music and Acoustics
The goal of the ZKM | Institute for Music and Acoustics (IMA) is to provide new impulses to electronic music through its activities in research and development.
For this reason, guest artists are regularly invited to work at the institute and develop new works on site. The ZKM | IMA hereby acts as work, production, and performance space.
The results of the artistic work are regularly made accessible to an interested public in performances, publications, and editions.
In addition to live electronics, one of the institute’s main focuses is acousmatic music – which is composed for presentation via loudspeakers either in combination with acoustic
instruments or not.

In this case, the computer as a device with programmable and thus changeable attributes is combined with new interfaces to serve as a flexible and open (musical) instrument.
At the ZKM | IMA, investigated in addition to acousmatic music are modern thematic fields, such as sound art, noise, live electronics, 3D-sound, and sound environments,
psycho-acoustics, and audio-visuality in addition to the connection of sound and the movement of the human body.
The theme of spatial sound is also an important focus of the ZKM | IMA. When electronic music began using space, new aesthetic possibilities arose, culminating
in the simulation and implementation of acoustic environments. The developments of the ZKM | IMA team, for example, the Sound Dome and the spatial sound control software Zirkonium, have contributed to advances in this field.

ZKM | Institute for Visual Media

The ZKM | Institute for Visual Media defines itself as a forum for the creative and critical analysis of a permanently transforming media culture.
Since its founding in 1991 under the direction of Jeffrey Shaw, it has been among the world’s leading research and production sites at the interface of digital art
and information technology. As a competence center for digital visual technology, currently directed by Peter Weibel, offers an innovative environment for socio-culturally,
scientifically, and economically important research and development in the fields of multimedia art and information technology.
In addition to its own developments with international guest artists, the collaboration with other cultural and research institutes also constitutes an integral part of the institute’s work.
The spectrum of production ranges from digital video and 3D animation through to interactive installations and environments, from software systems to the real-time generation of natural and architectonic environments, as well as audio-visual applications for performance contexts.

Innovative Software and Hardware for Artistic ProjectsOne of the focal points in the institute’s research and development work is the area of immersive projection environments,
in the framework of which, innovative hardware and software solutions for artistic projects are developed.

Through ongoing presentations as part of exhibitions and festivals, publications and conferences – conceived for interested audiences and professionals in the fields of art and science
– the institute’s production and work is widely disseminated and is met with enthusiastic response nationally and internationally.

ZKM | Institute for Music and Acoustics
Lorenzstraße 19
76135 Karlsruhe
Germany  Tel: +49 (0) 721-8100/1600
E-Mail: music@zkm.de

 

ZKM | Institute for Visual Media
Lorenzstraße 19
76135 Karlsruhe
Germany
Tel: +49 (0) 721/8100–1500
E-Mail: image@zkm.de