Kyra Delsing, Joyce Chen_陳禹先

(Artists) Talking Back To The Media

Back in time to the first year of Mediamatic Magazine

1985 was an important year for Mediamatic Magazine as for Dutch new media art in Amsterdam.

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De LIMA collectie: Activisme - In collaboration with de Appel arts centre, LIMA has recently made an inventory of the archives of 'Artists Talking Back to the Media'. This artist manifestation took place in the eighties, and combined playful interventions with raw critique of mass media and involved the participation of some leading international artists including John Baldessari, Barbara Kruger and General Idea. In the context of their archival research on this project, Camie Karstanje and Brigitte Bélanger curated…

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On tuesday 21 of October we went to the third edition of 'de LIMA collectie'. LIMA is a leading international platform that preserves, distributes and researches media art. The whole evening was centered around the activistic use of (new) media, with the artists manifestation ' Talking Back To The Media' as starting point. The manifestation was a co-operation of Time Based Arts, De Appel, Shaffy Theater, Kriterion, VPRO-Radio en AORTA and was initiated by artists and theoreticians David Garcia and Raul Marroquin.

The first Mediamatic Magazine (vol. 0#0) was published during the installation of Talking Back To The Media. Mediamatic founders, Willem and Jans, recalled the day they distributed the first Mediamatic Magazines at the festival in December 1985 and said it helped Mediamatic Magazine grew a great popularity in the art area. In Mediamatic Magazine vol. 0#0, Max Bruinsma reconstructs the conception of Talking Back To The Media with the help of interviews with David Garcia, Raul Marroquin and other artists.

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Logo for <em>Talking Back</em> 1985 -


Before we saw any artworks David Garcia spoke about the beginning of Talking Back To The Media. He told us that the name originally was "Artists talking back to the media, but that the graphic designers changed it because they didn't like the look of it. He also pointed out the importance of the location where Artists Talking Back to The Media took place:
“Amsterdam was the first city in Europe to have cable. And the good thing about Amsterdam is it has the scale of a village but the character of a capital city. You could organize an event as Artists Talking Back To The Media in another city, but it just wouldn’t have the same impact and visibility."

After this LIMA showed a series of artworks from 1985 until now. Looking at work from Lydia Schouten, General Idea and Donna Verheijden we got a tour through years and years of media art, that all started at Artists Talking Back To The Media where people combined playful interventions with raw critique of mass media. The evening at LIMA gave us a great insight into the (new) media scene at the time Mediamatic Magazine was founded.