Mediamatic is a cultural institution since 1983. We organize lectures, workshops and art projects, focusing on biotechnology and BioArt.
At Mediamatic we are always looking for new developments in society. We are interested in how art, design and science merge and how we can use this to experiment with new (living) materials. We challenge the senses and tackle perceptions regarding food, waste and unconventional materials such as piss, bacteria and fungi. The processes involved are all based on sustainable principles, as we are happy to contribute to a circular economy.
We organise lectures to further discover and learn how art, design and science merge and we look at how our senses, such as taste and smell, influence our emotions and associations. During Odorama we use smells to guide the audience through the world of everything olfactory, while the Biotalk focuses on art, science, new materials and new technologies and during the Pis’Talk we try to inspire a whole new perception of piss. The Pure Gold installation on our façade collects kindly donated urine, which we use as a fertiliser for the Dijkspark. We cultivate plants and fish together in our Aquaponics, a closed system in which we pump water from the fish tank through the grow beds. The excrements of the fish serve as a fertilizer and the plants filter the water returning to the fish tank. It is a sustainable system and perfect for growing food in the city as it hardly takes up any space and wastes very little water. We use the vegetables (and sometimes fish) from the Aquaponics green house for our restaurant Mediamatic ETEN. In the Myco Design Lab we explore the possibilities of designing with living organisms. We believe that the mycelium, the root system of mushrooms, will eventually replace plastic. Currently we are making insulation from mycelium using the waste from our brewery. We use this insulating material for isolating a nineteenth century barn, the project space where we organise our lectures.
In 1983 our focus was on media technology: video art, installations and performance were the early core of our presentations, productions and magazine. In the 1990s it was interactive media. We won international prizes with interactive CD-ROMs and co-organised the legendary Doors of Perception conferences (1993 and 1994). We then developed into leading creators of interactive social media projects. Our exhibitions, workshops and symposiums reached and continue to reach a large and diverse audience. In 1994, Mediamatic.net went online and our website has since grown into an online social network where members and organisations can exchange ideas and projects.
Besides Mediamatic.net, we have an online travel agency and an online dating service. We develop interactive installations in the Mediamatic Atelier and we host a distributed library. These projects all deal with the same question: how are new media changing our society? With new technology and social media come new social issues - and old issues in new forms that can be tackled with new tools. Art and audience participation, however, form the core of our practice. Examples of these projects are El HEMA,, an Arabic version of HEMA, WatSpinoza?, a public debate online and in Amsterdam and Kocaeli, and Over Datum Eetclub, challenging the food industry's wasteful policies. Kom Je Ook? is a program of workshops and symposiums concerned with new ways of working in the fields of art and heritage.
We work independently together with Mediamatic Lab, sharing knowledge, technology and facilities. Lab designs community websites and applications for the likes of Amsterdam Museum, Joods Historisch Museum, and Reinwardt Academy.
Do you want to hear about our exhibitions, projects and workshops as they happen? Register on our website and we'll keep you updated.