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“Hackteria: An Example of Neomodern Activism”, Boris Magrini, 2014 – LEA,

– Boris Magrini wrote this article during 2012-13 and it finally got published in the Leonardo Electronic Almanac, Volume 20 Issue 1

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“As a platform for knowledge sharing and artistic exploration, Hackteria constitutes a network of artists and researchers that merge the use of biotechnologies with hacking and do-it-yourself strategies. Its process-oriented and performative approaches, opposing to the materialistic imperatives of the art market, lean to the tradition of political art. In the present paper, I am arguing that Hackteria embodies what could be considered a neomodern activism, other recent examples of which are emerging within the new media art field. Instead of rejecting new controversial technologies, they propose a vision of a society that is moved forward by a more democratic use and discussion of these technologies. The activities of Hackteria are examined through the presentation of a bio-lab created in Ljubljana.”

The roots of Hackteria: from performative art to tactical media.
“The events organized by Hackteria are rooted in a long tradition of media art, as well as process-oriented and performative approaches. Performative art is not equivalent to process-oriented art; as Andreas Broeckmann correctly pointed out, “it only makes sense to speak of process-orientation in cases where the evolving process itself is a main factor of the aesthetic experience of the work.” [4] Nonetheless, neither performative nor process-oriented art focus on the creation of a finite product, a distinctive trait of the activities run by Hackteria. Furthermore, the BioTehna project, for example, share both performative, interactive and process-oriented qualities, for it is not the lab as such that is meaningful to the artistic intent of the group but rather the process involved in building and running it.”

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