art+bits is the only Polish art and technology festival that is delivered by several different organisations: Katowice’s most important cultural institution that is Katowice: City of Gardens, Poland’s largest medialab (Medialab Katowice), a leading Polish schools of art and design (Academy of Fine Arts, Katowice) and a premier creative sector company in the city (Netizens).
Institution of Culture Katowice: City of Gardens was founded as a result of Katowice’s bid for European Capital of Culture 2016. Although the city did not win the title, the proposed program of celebrations won recognition among residents and city authorities. The institution’s activities go far beyond traditional artistic projects, such as festivals, exhibitions, or concerts. An important role is played by educational and social projects as well as projects aiming to redefine the public space of Katowice. In 2015, the institution is implementing the programme of the celebrations marking the 150th anniversary of the city’s foundation.
Netizens Digital Innovation House works on interactive installations and software. It is formed by a team of professionals who develop innovative solutions connecting on-line and off-line worlds and implement IT projects on a large scale. Netizens is working with polish and worldwide brands, advertising agencies and IT departments, including Tauron, Saint-Gobain, Nexteer, Lexus, WSIP, ConceptX, Peppermint, etc.
The Academy of Fine Arts in Katowice trains students in its Faculty of Design and Faculty of Art. In addition to traditional arts, innovative fields of art linked to new media, cyberspace and the latest means of communication have also been undergoing rapid development. The core training curriculum is supplemented by workshops and courses with led by acclaimed Polish and international artists and designers. The Academy’s Roundabout Art Gallery is home to exhibitions, meetings, academic conferences and concerts by recognised international artists, which are delivered alongside shows by young artists and students aspiring to establish themselves professionally.
Medialab Katowice is an experimental project combining creative, research and education activities. Participants of interdisciplinary projects placing themselves at the intersection of art, design and technology use digital media to research the city and create new narratives for Katowice. Medialab is a forum for the exchange of ideas and knowledge, meeting inspiring artists and designers, as well as a collaboration platform for artists and institutions from different countries: universities, NGOs and creative-sector companies.