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example to come to a common wording and realising a suitable workflow that fits IT-
specialists, subject matter experts and other institutional personnel. In particular, traditional
hierarchies need to give way to an interdisciplinary teamwork. Finally, such a project needs
to be developed to a point of stability after which it can be left to a group of four to five
people who can maintain the environment and add new informational elements.
Making use of "media culture" centres
In the later 1990s, supported considerably by the Council of Europe, there was an
extended discussion about the role of "new media culture/s" and their roles in the
Information Society as safeguards of democracy and social cohesion, enablers of parti-
cipation and new forms of learning, and drivers of innovation in multimedia (for a snap-
shop of this discussion see Boyd et al., 1999). Points that were and still are clear in the
discussion about these cultures are that: (1) they provide a pool of new artist-initiated ways
of thinking and working within the digital environment, (2) are active on the interchange
of art and technology, (3) are strongly involved with youth cultures, marginal cultures, local
as well as global grassroots activities.The "new media culture/s" are to a considerable degree
driven by loosely connected individuals and groups, yet, over the last years there has been an
emergence of foremost media culture centres. Making use of such centres is an option for
cultural heritage institutions that value having access to competent and unconventional
support as well as a link to a lively and innovative culture.
Example:The Public Netbase (<>) based in the Museumsquartier of
Vienna has been in operation since 1994 and has developed from a small, active cultural
project into one of Europe's most respected media culture institutions. It promotes the
artistic use of digital media and as a non-profit Internet service provider supports a number
of artists, cultural activities, and cultural institutions with its technical expertise. Cultural
heritage institutions that draw on technical and creative resources from the Public Netbase
are for example: Sigmund Freud Museum (<>), MAK­Austrian
Museum of Applied Arts (<>),Wiener Secession
Merging of arts, culture and commerce
A new trend in the relationship of arts, design, architecture and commerce is the transfer
of methods developed by artists into the realm of business. Such methods of performance
are for example ambient sound, light design, video projections.They are used for a certain
"staging" and "mood management" that attracts culturally interested and well to do
customers, residents and cultural tourists.
The new relationship might also result in a partnership of joint projects in a new
generation of "cultural workers" and managers of shopping malls or trading centres.These
are cultural event managers, multimedia producers, audio-visual designers and performing
artists that are attracted by traditionally unusual or even inappropriate places to exhibit
cultural works and find a broader public than in the established art circles.Through the
added cultural value such places could become the "talk of the town" and a "must see" (e.g.
the Bluewater Center in London, that attracts shoppers as well as tourists with an interest in
design and culture). Others lead to a "tribalisation" of visitors with identical or correspon-
ding values, motivations, and life styles. Furthermore, as there is a growth in the wide spread
use of creative work amongst the new generation of "cultural workers" to other channels as
for example advertisement, on- and off-line multimedia, video clips and the like, the
audience also adapts to the new forms of presentation.