Prix Ars Electronica

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Logo Prix Ars Electronica

The Prix Ars Electronica is one of the best known and longest running yearly prizes in the field of electronic and interactive art, computer animation, digital culture and music. It has been awarded since 1987 by Ars Electronica (Linz, Austria).

In 2005, the Golden Nica, the highest prize, was awarded in six categories: "Computer Animation/Visual Effects," "Digital Musics," "Interactive Art," "Net Vision," "Digital Communities" and the "u19" award for "freestyle computing." Each Golden Nica came with a prize of 10,000, apart from the u19 category, where the prize was 5,000. In each category, there are also Awards of Distinction and Honorary Mentions.

The Golden Nica Award

The Golden Nica is replica of the Greek Nike of Samothrace. It is a handmade wooden statuette, plated with gold, so each trophy is unique: approximately 35 cm high, with a wingspan of about 20 cm, all on a pedestal. "Prix Ars Electronica" is a phrase composed of French, Latin and Spanish words, loosely translated as "Electronic Arts Prize."

Golden Nica winners

Computer animation / film / vfx

The "Computer Graphics" category (1987–1994) was open to different kinds of computer images. The "Computer Animation" (1987–1997) was replaced by the current "Computer Animation/Visual Effects" category in 1998. New York artist and musician John Fekner received honorary awards for Concrete People and The Last Days of Good and Evil in 1987 and 1988.

Computer Graphics

Computer Animation

Computer Animation/Visual Effects

Chris Lavis with the Golden Nica for "Madame Tutli-Putli" (2008)

Digital Music

This category is for those making electronic music and sound art through digital means. From 1987 to 1998 the category was known as "Computer music." Two Golden Nicas were awarded in 1987, and none in 1990. There was no Computer Music category in 1991.

Hybrid art

[the next idea] voestalpine Art and Technology Grant

  • 2009 - "Open_Sailing" by Open_Sailing Crew[1] led by Cesar Harada.
  • 2010 - "Hostage" by [Frederik De Wilde].[2]
  • 2011 - Choke Point Project by P2P Foundation (NL).[3]
  • 2012 - - tools for the next revolution by Christoph Wachter & Mathias Jud[4]
  • 2013 - Hyperform by Marcelo Coelho (BR), Skylar Tibbits (US), Natan Linder (IL), Yoav Reaches (IL)
    • Honorary Mentions: GravityLight by Martin Riddiford (GB), Jim Reeves (GB)[5]

Interactive Art

Joe Davis at the Prix Ars Electronica 2012

Prizes in the category of interactive art have been awarded since 1990. This category applies to many categories of works, including installations and performances, characterized by audience participation, virtual reality, multimedia and telecommunication.

Internet-related categories

In the categories "World Wide Web" (1995 – 96) and ".net" (1997 – 2000), interesting web-based projects were awarded, based on criteria like web-specificity, community-orientation, identity and interactivity. In 2001, the category became broader under the new name "Net Vision / Net Excellence", with rewards for innovation in the online medium.

World Wide Web

  • 1995 - "Idea Futures" by Robin Hanson
  • 1996 - "Digital Hijack" by etoy
    • Second prizes: HyGrid by SITO and Journey as an exile


Net Vision / Net Excellence

Digital Communities

Danny Wool, representing Wikipedia, receives a 2004 Golden Nica.

A category begun in 2004 with support from SAP (and a separate ceremony in New York City two months before the main Ars Electronica ceremony) to celebrate the 25th birthday of Ars Electronica. Two Golden Nicas were awarded.


  1. ^ "Prix 2009". Retrieved 25 September 2010. 
  2. ^ "Prix 2010". Retrieved 20 February 2011. 
  3. ^ "Prix 2011". Retrieved 13 July 2011. 
  4. ^ Retrieved 9 September 2013.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  5. ^ Retrieved 9 September 2013.  Missing or empty |title= (help)

External links