Logo Utrecht University

[urban interfaces]


8 March 2017
10:00 - 18:00
Central Library, Oudegracht 167

The Art of Data Politics

A hackathon hosted by SETUP in collaboration with Datafied Society & [urban interfaces]: could data-driven art make our urban public sphere great again?

(RMA student Paul Smidt wrote a blogpost about this hackathon. Find it here!)

After the election of Donald Trump and the Dutch elections approaching publicists warn for the distortion of the public debate. Information based on algorithmic ‘filter bubbles’ tend to confirm our worldview. Additionally in the current media landscape of ‘framing’ ‘fake news’ and ‘alternative facts’ it is becoming more and more difficult to distinguish fact from fiction. In this fact-free reality in which photographic evidence and raw data are met with increasing distrust the need for an alternative approach is needed to restore confidence in data and facts, little by little.

Within the context of a hectic election we organize a design challenge for data artists who aim for a political role in their design and imagination. Can we find an alternative to a partially poisoned online public sphere by developing worldview and bringing the debate back to the urban public sphere? Can ‘hard facts’ in the form of increasingly readily accessible ‘raw’ data help?

In the week prior to the hackathon, on February 27, hackathon participants are invited to attend the expert meeting “Imaging [Urban] Data Visualization.” During Imaging [Urban] Data Visualization, organized by Datafied Society and [urban interfaces] in collaboration with SETUP and MCW Expertise Centre, experts in the field of data visualization will engage in dialogue about the role of data visualization in public space. Participants of the expert meeting include: Tanne van Bree, Klaas Kuitenbrouwer, Eef Masson, Geert Mul, Peter Pelzer, Richard Vijgen, and Linda Vlassenrood. The expert meeting will shape the design challenge of the hackathon. Expert meeting program is attached.

The mission:

  • Develop a concept for an artistic installation in the public space which allows your audience to interact with data relevant to the Dutch election.
  • Pitch your first concept during lunch to experts from SETUP and Utrecht University
  • Apply feedback in a paper prototype and use video to demonstrate how your installation will work


Terms & Conditions:

  • Interpretation of public space is not limited to inside (public building) or outside (on the street)
  • Use existing objects wherever possible (i.e. sidewalks, statues, benches, parking meters)
  • Teams of 2 to 4
  • Use or aim to use real datasets wherever possible
  • All copyrights or other intellectual property rights remain property of the participants.


Registration/Contact:           http://bit.ly/2lAgmCH |  sgmkoopman@uu.nl

Feedback:                             Jelle van der Ster & Nanna Verhoeff

Language:                             Dutch / English