transmediale / Conversation Piece.

In Events and Exhibitions / July 14, 2015

The next edition of transmediale follows the format of a “Conversation Piece” which unfolds through a series of dialogues and participatory formats that articulate the most burning topics of post-digital culture today and that reflect the main ongoing themes of transmediale.

Conversation starters are everywhere as constant communication has become a mundane feature of post-digital culture. But to define common starting grounds for conversation in today’s agonistic and rapidly changing cultural landscape is a daunting if not impossible task. Against the backdrop of different processes of social transformation, 17th and 18th century European painters perfected the group portrait painting known as the “Conversation Piece” in which the everyday life of the aristocracy was depicted in ideal scenes of common activity. The Conversation Piece that is transmediale 2016 references and problematises the ideal of finding common ground through four interconnected thematic streams: Anxious to Act, Anxious to Make, Anxious to Share and Anxious to Secure.

Through these streams we take a critical look at what we could today think about as the fragmented and contradictory “ideal scenes” of cultural production and life under digital capitalism. Can the anxiousness to take part or not to take part in these idealised activities be used in a way that does not only lead to reactionary positions based on fear and exclusion?

What are the possible new values and methodologies of cultural co-production that allows itself not only to be “open” and “free” but that also in radical ways engage questions of security, sharing, collective ways of acting and new ways of making in the post-digital culture?


In the scope of its acclaimed annual festival, transmediale presents 20 000 visitors with an extensive range of exhibitions, conferences, screenings, performances and publications. Each year, a specific theme provides the framework for hundreds of artists, media activists, researchers, designers and other creative tinkerers to engage in reflective, aesthetic and speculative positions in between art, culture and technology.

The exhibition programme presents thematically curated works in combination with a selection of entries from our  annual call for works. It is particularly oriented to artworks that challenge us to rethink our everyday relationship to technology, old and new.

The conference and workshop programmes depart from the festival theme and use it to explore the critical dimension of networking, hacktivism, media theory and the politics of technological development. Throughout the years, renowned speakers from the academic and artistic fields have taken part either as keynotes speakers or conference panellists. The workshop programme connects and expands on the projects presented in the other programme sections and offers both practical and discussion-based approaches in more specialised and intimate settings.

The video programme is devoted to contemporary artistic video works and experimental film screenings with historical references. It encompasses a wide, contemporary spectrum of short artistic video works and special programmes of artist retrospectives, thematically related feature films or documentaries.

Live audiovisual expressions of old and new media form the main focus of our performance programme. The programme presents cross-disciplinary projects in the fields of installation, sound, performance and video on stage, showcasing the search for new forms of expression between artistic genres. Moreover, CTM Festival (formerly club transmediale) takes place in cooperation with transmediale, presenting a parallel programme dedicated to contemporary electronic, digital and experimental music.



Since 2011, transmediale also has an all-year ongoing activity in the form of a new project platform and a residency programme. These activities provide a sustainable structure of feedback, research and reflection that interacts with the yearly festival.

The reSource for transmedial culture is a new framework for transmediale festival related projects that happen throughout the year in the city of Berlin. It is an initiative that extends into ongoing activities with decisive touchdowns at each festival. The objective of the reSource for transmedial culture is to act as a link between the cultural production of art festivals and collaborative networks in the field of art and technology, hacktivism and politics. The reSource works in partnership with CTM/DISK, Kunstraum Kreuzberg/Bethanien and the Post-Media Lab of the Leuphana University Lüneburg.

The Vilém Flusser Residency Programme for Artistic Research supports projects and activities which are simultaneously conceptual and practice-based. The programme is geared towards the initiation of new research or to the further development of existing projects. It is offered in cooperation with the Flusser Archive at the University of Arts (UDK) in Berlin.



The transmediale archive comprises works, programme brochures, lectures, transmediale award winners and documentation from 28 years of festival activities. Apart from the content available on old websites and the extensive documentation already online since 2009, transmediale is presently working on the online distribution of older archive content.
Learn more about the history of transmediale and explore our Archive section.

transmediale is a project operating in the fields of media art, digital culture and new media – that said, it understands technology as being more than the digital world and of the cultural as being more than what emerges from within institutionalised fields of production. Accordingly, transmediale is a transdisciplinary platform, always searching for new avenues of artistic, academic, activist and everyday expressions. It is a project always on the look out for projects and persons who may help to navigate, reflect on and ultimately re-model the production of contemporary culture.

transmediale is a project by Kulturprojekte Berlin GmbH in collaboration with Haus der Kulturen der Welt. It is funded as a cultural institution of excellence by Kulturstiftung des Bundes.


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