| About Art's Birthday
WIENCOUVER - "an imaginary city hanging
invisibly between its two poles Vienna and Vancouver" was conceived by Vancouver
based artist performance, radio and telecommunication artist Hank Bull
in 1979 on the occasion of his participation in "AUDIO SCENE '79" in Vienna. To Bull, a friend and admirer of
Robert Filliou , WIENCOUVER represented the
idea of art as a relationship between people and life, the esthetic of social action
and international communications between artists. Today WIENCOUVER is still alive,
since 1999 also as the location of annual ART's BIRTHDAY celebrations between
artists in Vienna, Vancouver and beyond.
ART'S BIRTHDAY is an annual event first proposed on January 17th 1963 by French
Fluxus artist Robert Filliou. He suggested that 1,000,000 years ago "A man took a
dry sponge and dropped it into a bucket full of water. Who that man was is not
important. He is dead but art is alive." Filliou's ideas have inspired many artists
"After Filliou's death in 1987, some artists began to celebrate Art's Birthday with
mail art, fax and slow scan TV events in the spirit of his concept of "The Eternal
Network" or "La Fête permanente". The birthday parties took place in different
cities across the world and artists were asked to bring birthday presents for Art –
works that could be shared over the network.
Art's Birthday Party has never been a formal event, but was always organized on an
ad hoc basis through the network. Every participating location (and they are
different every year) organizes its own party – from a few friends in a private
studio to a performance evening in a museum or gallery.
Filliou's invention of Art's Birthday is wonderfully absurd and humorous in the
typical Fluxus tradition of serious fun. So the global birthday party for art has
always tried to be fun while paying homage to Robert Filliou's dream of The Eternal
Network.“ (Robert Adrian, 2005)
Since 1999 KUNSTRADIO in Vienna and the media section of WESTERN FRONT
in Vancouver have become initiators and cooperating hubs
of ART'S BIRTHDAY celebrations within the imaginary city of WIENCOUVER. ART'S
BIRTHDAY 1999 was the launch of WIENCOUVER 2000, still ongoing exchange between
artists in Vancouver and Vienna.