NEURO networking Europe

From February 27th to 29th young artists, filmmak- ers, musicians, theorists and activists from all over Europe and many other parts of the world meet at the Muffathalle in Munich for NEURO; a number of events, speeches, discussions, presentations, performances, concerts and actions reflecting the pulse of the age. About two years after the first make-world festival, NEURO will again interface with current debates around migration and mobility, racism and nationalism, civil society and global mobilisation, networking and new technologies, informatisation and precarious labour, education and control society, common organising, and digital culture.

But NEURO is not only a conference, nor is it just a fair or a conventional festival. Rather it is a place for three days of collaboration and common production. The challenge is to commonly use existing technological possibilities and to reclaim new forms of a public that stays outside of the metaphors of market and open-plan office and that does not dif- ferentiate between production and reception, creation and distribution. NEURO is about a critical, connected practice and a practical critique of net- working: to present the results of present projects in order to make them available beyond the occasion of this event, to discuss new ideas, plan and start common project.

First of all, NEURO stands for »Networking Europe«. Only a few weeks before the official eastern enlargement of the European Union, the central question concerns, at what point are the driving powers of a virtual europe relating to each other, where the traces of this association runs and how they can be bundled into creative alliances. Though not an end in itself, networking is now raising more than ever questions that cannot be answered at straightaway:

What does networking actually mean nowadays? What does networking have to do with freedom of movement? How do social movements network? Or: how can technologies be used in ways that they don't just change the self but the commonality ? How do we conceptualise the common that is created in and through networks whilst not being reducible to them?

Ten years after the start of the internet boom, the crisis of the idea of networks is long overdue. Alongside the collapse of the new markets, the bombastic constructions about media art, media theory and media activism have fallen like a house of cards. Nevertheless, in the ensuing impasse, a new generation of media and networking initiatives have formed and taken onboard the discussion and reflection on everyday life, and new tasks, methods, functions, challenges and perspectives.

Munich, February 26-29, 2004