Podcast: Managing a Tech Heavy Arts Festival

Photo: Ryan Michael White  , 2016 VIA Festival, Pittsburgh PA

Photo: Ryan Michael White, 2016 VIA Festival, Pittsburgh PA

More and more arts organizations are experimenting with visual and augmented reality. If used correctly, both technologies offer the possibility to transform entertainment and the way we present and interact with art.

Poster: 2016 VIA festival, Pittsburgh PA

Poster: 2016 VIA festival, Pittsburgh PA

Earlier this month the VIA festival's 7th edition took place from October 6th to the 9th. Founded in 2010, VIA is Pittsburgh’s premier audio-visual forward-thinking festival showcasing what’s next in music, art, and technology by national and international artists and musicians. According to Dummy Magazine in a recent review, “In an oversaturated global festival market what sets VIA apart from its peers is a hunger to stretch what it means to be a festival in the 21st Century”. VIA is a collective that celebrates diversity in their curated series, promoting Pittsburgh's arts community as well as female-identified, LGBTQ and artists of color. The events take place all around the city and also support local businesses and vendors.

This year, they worked with WEIRD REALITY, a symposium within the Arts && Code conference organized by the  Frank-Ratchye STUDIO for Creative Inquiry. WEIRD REALITY is a series of events displaying the cultural and aesthetic potentials of emerging technologies. The symposium and VIA featured the "VR Salon" to present emerging, diverse and partly marginalized perspectives positions.

Recently, AMT Lab Contributor Seggen Mikael sat down with Lauren Goshinski and Larry Shea from the VIA Festival for an interview on how to manage such a technologically heavy festival and the difficulties that may occur along the way. They also talked about financing, marketing and have some advice at the end for our listeners.

Lauren Goshinski is the co-founder and artistic director of the VIA festival and a fellow at Frank-Ratchy STUDIO for Creative Inquiry. Additionally, she is an artist, cultural producer, and works as the Marketing & Communications Manager at Carnegie Mellon School of Art. Larry Shea is the Associate Professor for Video & Media Design at Carnegie Mellon School of Drama and has a diverse career at the intersection of art and media technology. Larry is also an artist, working mainly with film, video and interactive digital media.

You can listen to the interview above, or follow our Podcast Series via iTunesGoogle Play, or Stitcher. In addition, you can find a full transcript of the podcast here.

Photo: Peter Leeman  , 2016 VIA Festival, Pittsburgh PA

Photo: Peter Leeman, 2016 VIA Festival, Pittsburgh PA