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<nettime> URGENT - BEK: Call for support
Trond Lossius on Mon, 13 Oct 2003 13:26:52 +0200 (CEST)


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<nettime> URGENT - BEK: Call for support


BEK - Bergen Centre for Electronic Arts might be forced to close down
early next year due to lack of governmental support. For this reason we
call for your support. If you believe that BEK should continue to exist,
please express your support at our web page:

http://www.bek.no

or by sending a mail to demo {AT} bek.no.

HISTORY

BEK - Bergen Centre of Electronic Arts, was found while Bergen, Norway,
was one of 9 cultural cities of Europe 2000. The founding of BEK was part
of a national strategy initiated by The Norwegian Council for Cultural
Affairs to better working conditions for artists working within the field
of new media arts in Norway. BEK is part of the Norwegian Production
Network for Electronic Arts (www.pnek.no). So far The Norwegian Council
for Cultural Affairs has provided most of the financial support for BEK.
The Norwegian Council for Cultural Affairs is not permitted to support
organizations for extended periods, and will not be able to support BEK in
the future. For this reason, we've applied for Governmental support from
2004. The proposed National Budget does not include future support for
BEK. For this reason we now fear that we will be forced to close down
early next year. If so, we believe that one of the strongest current
Norwegian voices on the international art scene will be silenced, causing
a severe setback to artistic exchange between the art community in Norway
and abroad.

ACTIVITY AND INTERNATIONAL PROFILE

BEK hosted the first international workshop dealing with Nato.0+55 in the
summer of 2000, and has been profiled as a valuable resource for artists
in Norway and abroad using live technologies such as Max, MSP, Nato.0+55,
streaming technology, Keystroke/Keyworx, etc. The mailing list /55\ was
established when Netochka Nezvanova was thrown of the Max-MSP mailing
list. HC Gilje and Kurt Ralske of 242.pilots first met during the workshop
at BEK. 242.pilots has toured the world as pioneers of real time based
video performance, and the received the Image Award at Transmediale.03
International Media Art Festival in Berlin, February 2003.

The development of "MøB", Linux GNU software for real-time video
processing (mob.bek.no) has been a major project for the last two years.
In November 2003 BEK will host an international conference and festival,
Piksel, of artists/developers working with real-time video on Linux
(www.piksel.no). Piksel will be a valuable opportunity to coordinate
current development of real time video software for Linux around the
world. The workshop was overbooked before we got the opportunity to do a
call for participation.

BEK has been an important part of the Bergen electronic music and
electronica community. Torbjørn Brundtland of Röyksopp was doing civil
service at BEK when Röyksopp hit the British pop charts in 2001.
Underground artists such as Kaptein Kaliber, Jazzkammer, Alog and
Phonophani have been collaborating with BEK at a number of projects.
Pilota.fm started out as a net radio focusing on electronic and
contemporary music. The Trollofon concerts on a vintage trolley bus has
hosted artists such as Phonophani, Oval, Alog, Pita, Kim Hiortøy, Tujiko
Noriko, Maja Ratkje, Massimo and Fennesz. The concerts are available for
download as mp3 at Pilota.fm. The Pilota project also caused the
Municipality of Bergen to continue supporting the use of trolley buses in
Bergen two years ago. BEK also hosts another net radio focusing on the
local music scene (www.radiofetthode.no) and the mailing list CsoundTekno.

BEK has been affiliated with the most important Norwegian contemporary
theatre companies, such as BAK-truppen (www.baktruppen.org) and
Verdensteatret (www.verdensteatret.com). BEK has been involved in the
production of a number of short movies. The short movie "Love is the Law"
was presented as part of Semaine Internationale de la Critique at the
Cannes Film Festival 2003 and received "Prix Canal + du Meilleur court
métrage" and " Prix de la (Toute) Jeune Critique".

This year BEK is hosting 6 artists and students from abroad, participating
in the NIFCA Media Artist in Residence, Fulbright program, Leonardo da
Vinci EU training programme and other exchange programmes.




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