radio, radio, radio, …

Elisabeth Zimmermann

Asking what is radio and especially what is radio art today can easily result in an answer like “a stream among many other streams”.

It is amazing that for artists from all over the world radio is still a fascinating medium and material to work with, although so much has changed in the last years. But it seems that these radical changes make radio an interesting field and space for experimentation and for art whether it is listened to on a kitchen radio, in the car, the computer, on the smart phone, or on a tablet, at home, on the way, alone or with others…

Radio Revolten is a broad mix of today’s radio art and transmission art tendencies. I think that especially the variety of definitions of and ideas towards radio art, the engagement in the field by the curators team and its different artistic and theoretical backgrounds have made it possible to bring together interesting radio art projects and performances, which can be experienced for the whole month of October 2016.

Kunstradio – Radiokunst was founded in 1987 by the curator, journalist and art critic Heidi Grundmann as a space for radio art. Kunstradio can be heard every Sunday night at 11pm CET on the cultural channel Österreich 1 of the Austrian national public radio ORF, as the producer I am interested in the theory and practice of radio art and its developments. Over the past decades artists from very different backgrounds have linked the space and infrastructure of Public Radio with independent radios around the world, with the private studios of artists, with all kinds of performance and installation spaces to realise an astonishing array of artistic reflection of radio as a medium and radio as a technology in many innovative Kunstradio projects. One important aspect always has been to also reflect on and discuss the historical roots and the current trends of radio art.

On October 27th and 28th, 2016 there will be a further possibility for reflections and debates about artists use of radio and beyond during the conference “Radio Space is the Place”. There will be the chance to listen to different kinds of theories and topics in connection with the idea of radio space, which is referring to Point 7 “Radio space is all the places where radio is heard” in the RADIO ART Manifesto by the artist Robert Adrian, which he formulated on the occasion of the festival “Immersive Sound / Kunst in der Stadt II”, Bregenz, 1998.*
Robert Adrian (1935 – 2015) has been an important inspiration for Kunstradio and he has been a very dear friend, whose critical mind and his at all times readiness for discussion and reflection is missed…

Finally I want to take the chance to thank Radio Corax for taking the main load of organizational effort related to the Radio Revolten and also for their faith in our ideas.

Elisabeth Zimmermann, Curator

*The whole Radio Art Manifesto can be found here.