The Project (1986)

In 1986, Minus Delta t carried out an action at Ars electronica entitled The Project, in which the French artist collectives Frigo, Radio Bellevue and Code Public were also involved. In addition to a live concert by Minus Delta t (where a chicken was slaughtered on an open stage), it also included a “Container City”, a media studio made of containers, which was set up next to the Bruckner House in Linz and which already bore a resemblance to the container studio in Kassel next to the Fridericianum at documenta for Piazza virtuale.

The festival programme booklet says about the programme section “Austria Picture”: “Minus Delta t travels through Austria by car with car phone, video equipment, digitizer, computer and telephone modem, sends pictures about every hour and daily reports (partly live) to Linz and can be followed through Austria during the entire Ars Electronica. The images are received in one of the containers, immediately appear on the monitor (slowscan) and are printed out. Frigo complements the video programme. Daily reports, interviews, sounds and music of the way. The radio aesthetic is shaped by Radio Bellevue. Documentary, art, reportage, mediation, living space, cuddle bench, meeting place and functional hitec.” According to the festival’s catalogue, a “new image transmission system was used that requires only a fraction of the previous transmission time and carries television images via telephone as far as desired.” The name of this transmission system was SSPZ by the Austrian company Morocutti.

The programme is described in the catalogue as follows: “The most obvious motifs would be pictures that Austria has of itself (how Austria sees itself); in principle, everything that is characteristic is possible, but the Spanish Riding School, the Golden Roof, the Lindwurm, Lake Neusiedl, the Sacher cake and the horse flood are sights and only have to appear for rough orientation in the sequence of constantly transmitted pictures… “. Above all, everyday pictures from Austria should be included: “Ice skaters in a circle, music band from a wedding, funeral procession or anniversary, swimming pool, a topless woman and a woman in a swimming costume, a family in the swimming pool eating schnitzel with potato salad, the portrait of the bath attendant, self-service petrol station: a travelling salesman helps himself, Montezuma’s crown of feathers in the Ethnological Museum. And which of the pictures could just as well come from another part of Central Europe – if not the world? Or are there distinctive images from Austria through which Austria has not yet represented itself?”

The printouts of the video images were shown in the Bruckner House under the title “Installation Archive Europe Archive Asia” together with videos from the archive of the group.