Cyberculture is upon us. It is the last movement of the 20th century. Its supporters are the first cyberspace nomads: a heterogeneous group of visionary scientists, hackers, computer-fan musicians and digital image artists. Their interests range from high technology to virtual games, from hypertext to smart drinks, from cyberpunk literature to the Internet and brain implants. Their motto: Information must be free! Art Futura ’94: Cyberculture is a video and conference programme designed to draw attention to this new and fascinating universe.
Cyberspace is the last frontier, a meta-network, a network of networks. Two million computers connected around the planet house the largest virtual community in existence. 20 million users form a real-time techno-society. A new culture is gestating in cyberspace. In the networks that connect these computers, mainly the Internet, cybernauts surf, looking for the waterline, the “ultimate computer-age pirate utopia”. Every night, millions of people connect in a global chat session. They work in the interzone, a border, a no-man’s land, uncoupled from the logic of power, where a new language is being born, beyond words: ;-)
They go to BBS (bulletin board systems), transformed into telematic agoras and into social centres of knowing. Being a cybernaut means navigating technology with attitude and intelligently, understanding that if technology is not controlled, it controls. Information is freed from intricate access codes imposed by the big networks only to circulate alongside your own thoughts. Today the main problem is not freedom of information, but as Paul Virilio said so well, freedom of perception and environmental autonomy.
In this context, happiness is the last and only authentic discipline. It doesn’t matter whether the last straw is this so-called cyberculture or whether it comes from the same haystack. As Joseph Beuys said: it’s not the bullet that kills you, it’s the hole.