STARTS is an initiative of the European Commission to foster alliances of technology and artistic practice. As part of this initiative, the STARTS Prize awards the most pioneering collaborations and results in the field of creativity and innovation at the crossings of science and technology with the arts. The STARTS Prize of the European Commission is launched by Ars Electronica and the consortium partners BOZAR, Waag, INOVA+, T6 Ecosystems, French Tech Grande Provence and Frankfurter Buchmesse.
Science, Technology and Arts (=STARTS) form a nexus with an extraordinarily high potential for creative innovation. And such innovation is considered to be precisely what’s called for if we’re to master the social, ecological and economic challenges that Europe will be facing in the near future. The role of artists thus is no longer seen to be just about propagating scientific and technological knowledge and skills among the general public but much more as a kind of catalyst that can inspire and trigger innovative processes. The artistic practice of creative exploration and experimental appropriation of new technologies has a wide reaching potential to contribute to the development of new products and new economic, social and business models. Accordingly, the STARTS Prize focuses on artistic works that influence or change the way we look at technology, and on innovative forms of collaboration between the ICT sector and the world of art and culture.
Two prizes, each with €20,000 prize money, are offered to honor innovative projects at the intersection of science, technology and the arts: The emphasis of both prizes lies on the creative appropriation and employment of technologies as well as the search for unique constellations of collaboration from the STARTS fields.https://www.youtube.com/embed/Hi9uUnsKa90?feature=oembed
What can be submitted?
- Groundbreaking collaborations and projects driven by both technology and the arts. Purely artistic or technologically driven projects are not the focus of this competition.
- All forms of artistic works and practices with a strong link to innovation in technology, business and/or society; furthermore, STARTS is not restricted to a particular genre such as media art and digital art.
- All types of technological and scientific research and development that has been inspired by art or involves artists as catalysts of novel thinking.
- The jury is looking forward to receiving submissions from a broad variety of fields and disciplines. Among others, projects from the areas of new media applications, human computer interaction, machine learning, biotechnology, art & science, green technologies, material research, smart cities and citizen empowerment, robotics, quantum technology and many more are very welcome to apply.
- For inspiration, have a look at our broad range of winners, honorary mentions and nominations of the past years
Who can enter?
- Artists/creative professionals or the researchers/companies involved from throughout the world; STARTS is not limited to citizens of EU-member states.
According to which criteria are the entries judged?
- Quality of the artistic research and its potential influence on technology
- Quality and success of the collaboration between art and technology
- Quality and intensity of the connection to innovation, education, social inclusion or sustainability
- General criteria such as aesthetics, originality, convincing concept, innovation and the technique and quality of the presentation
Additional details about submitting an entry
- The submission phase for 2021 STARTS Prize begins on January 11, 2021. The submission platform is accessible between January 11 and March 3, 2021, at starts-prize-call.aec.at.
- Every submitted project must be, at the time of its submission, either totally completed or far enough along for the jury to be able to assess its quality and the likelihood of it being successfully implemented. The same applies to collaborative arrangements—at the time they’re submitted, they must already be up-and-running and in the implementation stage. No consideration will be given to entries that are purely concepts, ideas or proposals for collaboration.
- Projects should not be older than two years or have to show a significant update or further development within the last two years.
- There is no fee to enter the STARTS Prize 2021 competition.
- Every submission to the Prix Ars Electronica prize competition can also be entered for STARTS Prize consideration. In other words, it’s possible for a single project to win both the STARTS Prize 2021 as well as a Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica grand prize. How does this work? It’s totally easy—at the end of the Prix Ars Electronica online submission, simply check the appropriate box!
- A project submitted to the STARTS Prize is automatically entered to the Ars Electronica Award for Digital Humanity as well.
What sorts of materials/documentation have to be submitted?
- A video documentary (approximately 3 minutes in length)
- Images (JPG, TIF, BMP, PNG) at the highest possible resolution; compressed files (such as .zip or .lzh files) are unacceptable.
- A clear, detailed description of the artistic concept, the form of interaction and technical implementation; since specific prerequisites have to be fulfilled for an onsite presentation to take place (e.g. in conjunction with the Ars Electronica Festival), the project’s specifications as to hardware & software and spatial requirements should be as detailed as possible. Moreover, the entrant must specify what he/she can provide on his/her own in order to stage such an onsite presentation, and what must necessarily be furnished by Ars Electronica Linz.
- A printable portrait photo and a biography of the artist
- At the entrant’s option, additional material such as images, documents and drawings (as PNG or PDF) can also be submitted.
When and how does the jury reach its decision?
- The jury convenes at the end of April, 2021. All STARTS Prize 2021 winners will be notified by Mid-June 2021 at the latest.
Where and when will the winning projects be presented?
- At the Ars Electronica Festival in September 2021 in Linz, Austria and at various exhibitions and events of the the consortium partners worldwide.
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