2019 STARTS Prize Jury

All nominations are judged by a jury to decide on the two prize-winning projects and up to ten honorary mentions.

PortraitFerdi Alici (TR) is the Founder and Director of OUCHHH, a talented new media and motion design agency. Ferdi strives to find balance between art, science, and technology in every work he creates. As a new media artist and designer, he believes that science inspires great art, thus their integration is vital to Ferdi’s approach. He creates award-winning outdoor A/V performances, video mapping projections, kinetic sculptures and immersive experiences that touch upon the belief in employing design principles based on nature and applying these to computational design. Ferdi’s work has been featured in world-renowned museums, organizations, publications and has worked with numerous international brands and recently working for Netflix USA and Sony USA.
PortraitFrancesca Bria (IT) is Senior Researcher and Advisor on Technology and Innovation policy. She has a PhD in Innovation Economics for Imperial College, London and MSc on Digital Economy from University of London, Birbeck. As Senior Programme Lead at Nesta, the UK Innovation Agency, she has led the EU D-CENT project, the biggest European Project on direct democracy and digital currencies. She also led the DSI project on Digital Social Innovation in Europe, advising the EU on digital social innovation policies. She has been teaching in several universities in the UK and Italy and she has advised Governments, public and private organizations and movements on Technology and Innovation policy, and its socio-economic impact. Francesca Bria is an adviser for the European Commission on Future Internet and Innovation Policy. She is currently the Commissioner of Digital Technology and Innovation for the city of Barcelona in Spain and she is leading the DECODE project on data sovereignty in Europe.
PortraitRikke Frisk (DK) is the founder and co-director of the community focused culture production company: Indgreb, which is based in Copenhagen. Indgreb specializes in projects within participant-driven art and innovation events. Within their portfolio is the creation of the international innovation and art competition festival, Afsnit I. Rikke’s latest initiative is Talk Town – a debate festival on gender, equality and feminism of which she is co-initiator and festival director, a position she is familiar with from her time as manager and co-creator of Strøm – the leading festival for electronic music in Scandinavia, which she ran for several years. Later on Rikke was head of the secretariat for the Copenhagen hosting of WOMEX – the world’s biggest world music fair and festival. Among several obligations she is a member of the board of Denmark’s leading venues for contemporary, experimental Jazz and world music: Copenhagen Jazzhouse and Global. With a background in architecture and communication she is an experienced creative leader, with renowned relational abilities to unfold peoples skills and ideas.
PortraitHonor Harger (NZ) is a curator from New Zealand interested in the cultural impact of scientific ideas and how digital technology is shaping society. She is the Executive Director for ArtScience Museum Singapore. Since, she joined, ArtScience Museum has held large-scale exhibitions by some of the world’s best known artists including Leonardo da Vinci, Salvador Dalí and M.C. Escher, as well as presenting significant exhibitions that explore aspects of science, including big data, particle physics, natural history, marine biology, cosmology and space exploration. Prior to joining ArtScience Museum, Honor was the director of Lighthouse, a digital arts venue in Brighton, UK. In 2010, she was guest curator of the transmediale festival in Berlin, and from 2004 – 2008, was director of the AV Festival the UK’s largest biennial of digital art, film and music. She was also the first curator of webcasting for Tate, where she also curated events and concerts at Tate Modern from 2000-2003. Honor is one of the co-founders of the sound art collective, r a d i o q u a l i a. One of their main projects was Radio Astronomy, a radio station broadcasting sound from space. Honor has given talks at conferences and festivals such as LIFT, TED, SciFoo, Webstock, MuseumNext, Ars Electronica, Innovative City Forum, and World Architecture Festival, as well a lecturing at the European Space Agency, the Centre Pompidou, MIT, California Institute of the Arts, and the American Film Institute and other places.
PortraitNadav Hochman (US) is co-founding director of The Tech + Arts Initiative at The Tech Museum of Innovation in Silicon Valley (CA, USA), facilitating creative collaborations between global artists, designers, industry partners, and research institutions. Prior to joining The Tech, Hochman led acclaimed projects in the tech industry, academia, and the art world. His work has been exhibited in MoMA (NYC), Google Zeitgeist, and SXSW and featured in media outlets such as Popular Science, the Atlantic, Wired, and the Guardian. Hochman holds a PhD in Art History from the University of Pittsburgh.
PortraitDaehyung Lee (KR), art critic, curator, and POWER LEADER 2012 acclaimed by Forbes Korea, has been curating contemporary Asian art for the last 17 years. He curated Korean Eye Moon Generation in 2009 and its nomadic show until 2012 at Saatchi Gallery in London. Currently he leads Hyundai Motor’s ARTLAB and its global art partnerships that include MMCA’s Hyundai Motor Series to Tate Modern’s Hyundai Commission, LACMA’s The Hyundai Project, Bloomberg Brilliant Ideas. Most recently, he curated “Counterbalance: The Stone and the Mountain” at the Korean Pavilion, La Biennale di Venezia 2017 and the Max Mara Coats! Seoul in 2017. He holds an MA in Curatorial Studies from Columbia University in New York and has advised the interdisciplinary playground ZER01NE (2018), Gwangju Biennale (2016), Busan Biennale (2014) and Cheongju Craft Biennale (2013).
PortraitAlexander Mankowsky (DE), born in Berlin 1957, studied Social Science, Philosophy and Psychology at the ‘Freie Universität Berlin’. In 1989 he started working in the research institute of Daimler in Berlin. The multidisciplinary approach in the institute integrated a wide array of disciplines, from social sciences to artificial intelligence. His current working topics are Futures Studies, focussed on the ever changing culture of mobility, the interdependency of social and technological innovation and other aspects of envisioning paths into the future.
PortraitMoon Ribas (ES) is a Catalan avant-garde artist and cyborg activist best known for developing the Seismic Sense, an online seismic sensor implanted in her feet that allows her to perceive earthquakes taking place anywhere in the planet through vibrations in real time. Ribas transposes the earthquakes into either sound, in her piece Seismic Percussion; or dance, in Waiting For Earthquakes. In 2010 she co-founded the Cyborg Foundation, an international organisation that aims to help people become cyborgs, defend cyborg rights and promote cyborg art. Ribas also co-founded the Transpecies Society in 2017, an association that gives voice to non-human identities, defends the freedom of self-design and offers the creation of new senses and new organs in community.
PortraitŞerife (Sherry) Wong (US/TR) is an artist, activist, and AI ethics consultant. In 2018, she founded Icarus Salon, an initiative to enrich the dialogue on the ethics of emerging technology. She was a Program Manager for the Autodesk Residency Program and created the Impact Residency at Pier 9 Technology Center (San Francisco, 2015-2018) where she worked with over 100 leading creative technologists exploring the future of robotics, AR/VR, engineering, 3D printing, and architecture. Şerife Wong has also worked on the development team at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and was assistant editor of Artnet Magazine. As an artist, she has exhibited internationally at venues such as Art Basel Miami, Shanghai Art Fair, FIAC Paris, ARCO Madrid, and Art Cologne. She is now focusing on her AI ethics work, which includes serving on a scientific advisory panel for USAID and Duke University on the future use of AI to address humanitarian challenges and researching AI ethics and governance for the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

STARTS Prize Nomination Committee

All submissions are judged by a nomination committee in the order of their arrival. The nomination committee selects up to 30 projects to nominate for prize consideration by the jury.

PortraitFrancesca Bria (IT) is Senior Researcher and Advisor on Technology and Innovation policy. She has a PhD in Innovation Economics for Imperial College, London and MSc on Digital Economy from University of London, Birbeck. As Senior Programme Lead at Nesta, the UK Innovation Agency, she has led the EU D-CENT project, the biggest European Project on direct democracy and digital currencies. She also led the DSI project on Digital Social Innovation in Europe, advising the EU on digital social innovation policies. She has been teaching in several universities in the UK and Italy and she has advised Governments, public and private organizations and movements on Technology and Innovation policy, and its socio-economic impact. Francesca Bria is an adviser for the European Commission on Future Internet and Innovation Policy. She is currently the Commissioner of Digital Technology and Innovation for the city of Barcelona in Spain and she is leading the DECODE project on data sovereignty in Europe.
PortraitHonor Harger (NZ) is a curator from New Zealand interested in the cultural impact of scientific ideas and how digital technology is shaping society. She is the Executive Director for ArtScience Museum Singapore. Since, she joined, ArtScience Museum has held large-scale exhibitions by some of the world’s best known artists including Leonardo da Vinci, Salvador Dalí and M.C. Escher, as well as presenting significant exhibitions that explore aspects of science, including big data, particle physics, natural history, marine biology, cosmology and space exploration. Prior to joining ArtScience Museum, Honor was the director of Lighthouse, a digital arts venue in Brighton, UK. In 2010, she was guest curator of the transmediale festival in Berlin, and from 2004 – 2008, was director of the AV Festival the UK’s largest biennial of digital art, film and music. She was also the first curator of webcasting for Tate, where she also curated events and concerts at Tate Modern from 2000-2003. Honor is one of the co-founders of the sound art collective, r a d i o q u a l i a. One of their main projects was Radio Astronomy, a radio station broadcasting sound from space. Honor has given talks at conferences and festivals such as LIFT, TED, SciFoo, Webstock, MuseumNext, Ars Electronica, Innovative City Forum, and World Architecture Festival, as well a lecturing at the European Space Agency, the Centre Pompidou, MIT, California Institute of the Arts, and the American Film Institute and other places.
PortraitNadav Hochman (US) is co-founding director of The Tech + Arts Initiative at The Tech Museum of Innovation in Silicon Valley (CA, USA), facilitating creative collaborations between global artists, designers, industry partners, and research institutions. Prior to joining The Tech, Hochman led acclaimed projects in the tech industry, academia, and the art world. His work has been exhibited in MoMA (NYC), Google Zeitgeist, and SXSW and featured in media outlets such as Popular Science, the Atlantic, Wired, and the Guardian. Hochman holds a PhD in Art History from the University of Pittsburgh.
PortraitDaehyung Lee (KR), art critic, curator, and POWER LEADER 2012 acclaimed by Forbes Korea, has been curating contemporary Asian art for the last 17 years. He curated Korean Eye Moon Generation in 2009 and its nomadic show until 2012 at Saatchi Gallery in London. Currently he leads Hyundai Motor’s ARTLAB and its global art partnerships that include MMCA’s Hyundai Motor Series to Tate Modern’s Hyundai Commission, LACMA’s The Hyundai Project, Bloomberg Brilliant Ideas. Most recently, he curated “Counterbalance: The Stone and the Mountain” at the Korean Pavilion, La Biennale di Venezia 2017 and the Max Mara Coats! Seoul in 2017. He holds an MA in Curatorial Studies from Columbia University in New York and has advised the interdisciplinary playground ZER01NE (2018), Gwangju Biennale (2016), Busan Biennale (2014) and Cheongju Craft Biennale (2013).
PortraitAlexander Mankowsky (DE), born in Berlin 1957, studied Social Science, Philosophy and Psychology at the ‘Freie Universität Berlin’. In 1989 he started working in the research institute of Daimler in Berlin. The multidisciplinary approach in the institute integrated a wide array of disciplines, from social sciences to artificial intelligence. His current working topics are Futures Studies, focussed on the ever changing culture of mobility, the interdependency of social and technological innovation and other aspects of envisioning paths into the future.
PortraitŞerife (Sherry) Wong (US/TR) is an artist, activist, and AI ethics consultant. In 2018, she founded Icarus Salon, an initiative to enrich the dialogue on the ethics of emerging technology. She was a Program Manager for the Autodesk Residency Program and created the Impact Residency at Pier 9 Technology Center (San Francisco, 2015-2018) where she worked with over 100 leading creative technologists exploring the future of robotics, AR/VR, engineering, 3D printing, and architecture. Şerife Wong has also worked on the development team at the Electronic Frontier Foundation and was assistant editor of Artnet Magazine. As an artist, she has exhibited internationally at venues such as Art Basel Miami, Shanghai Art Fair, FIAC Paris, ARCO Madrid, and Art Cologne. She is now focusing on her AI ethics work, which includes serving on a scientific advisory panel for USAID and Duke University on the future use of AI to address humanitarian challenges and researching AI ethics and governance for the Center for Advanced Study in the Behavioral Sciences at Stanford University.

STARTS Prize Advisors

22 international advisors who have reputation and credibility in the field recommend projects and help to encourage wider ranges of participants as well as a geographical and gender balance.

PortraitJussi Ängeslevä (FI) is a designer, an artist and an educator. With home base at the Berlin University of the Arts and the Royal College of Arts, but lecturing around the planet, he is working with digital materiality and interaction design. In parallel to the academic work, he is the Vice Creative Director of ART+COM studios. His design ethos is leveraging hardware, software, physical and graphic design in the search for elegance in highly specific solutions, where the meaning of a work is inseparable from the medium communicating it.
PortraitCamille C. Baker (CA/UK) is a Reader at the School of Communication Design, University for the Creative Arts, Epsom, UK. She is also a media artist-performer/researcher/curator who has done recent work in participatory mobile and sensor performance using wearable technologies, and is now exploring creative coding and electronic development for smart-fashion projects. Her other research interests have included: responsive interfaces and environments, video art and live cinema, experience design, telematics, networked communities, web animation, digital media curating, and music composition and performance.
PortraitMaurice Benayoun (MoBen, 莫奔) (FR) is artist, theorist and curator and a pioneering figure in the field of New Media Art. His work explores media boundaries, from virtual reality to large-scale public art installations, from a socio-political perspective. Benayoun has been widely awarded (4 Prix Ars Electronica awards, Golden Nica 1998…) and exhibited in major international museums, biennials and festivals. Some of MoBen’s major artworks include Tunnel under the Atlantic (95), World Skin, a Photo Safari in the Land of War (97). MoBen’s most recent works investigate the concepts of critical fusion and transactional aesthetics. Benayoun is currently Professor at the School of Creative Media, City University Hong Kong.
PortraitIsabel Berz (ES) is Head of IED REC, the Research and Education Center at the Istituto Europeo di Design, Spain. As Fashion Designer, Researcher and Educator, Isabel launched her own fashion label in 1990. In 2004 she was nominated Director of the Fashion School at IED Madrid, and in 2016 she founded IED REC, Research and Education Center in Madrid as an incubator of research at the intersection of Fashion, Design, Craft and Technology. IED REC creates research programmes like IED CoDesign Project Las Manuelas, IED Craft Platform and is Partner of the EU Cosme Worth Partnership Project and the EU Horizon 2020 Re-FREAM Project.
PortraitRégine Debatty (BE) is a writer, curator, critic, and founder of we-make-money-not-art.com, a blog which received 2 Webby awards and an honorary mention at the STARTS Prize. Régine Debatty writes and lectures internationally about the way in which artists, hackers, and designers use technology as a medium for critical discussion. She also created A.I.L. (Artists in Laboratories), a weekly radio program about the connections between art and science for Resonance 104.4 FM in London (2012–14), and is co-author of the “sprint book” New Art/Science Affinities published by Carnegie Mellon University.
PortraitNick Ervinck (BE) is fostering a cross-pollination between the digital and the physical and explores the boundaries between various media. Studio Nick Ervinck applies tools and techniques from new media, in order to explore the aesthetic potential of sculpture, 3D prints installation, architecture and design. Through his divergent practice, a strong fascination with the construction of space is noticeable. Not only does Nick Ervinck focus on the autonomous sculptural object, he also questions its spatial positioning and points to the phenomenological experience and embodiment of space. Ervinck’s work in short oscillates between the static and the dynamic, prospecting new virtual or utopian territories. Nick Ervinck creates huge installations, sculptures, prints, work drawings and animated films. For several years he participated in many individual projects and group shows.
PortraitBeatrice de Gelder (NL) is Professor of Cognitive Neuroscience in the Faculty of Psychology and Neuroscience at Maastricht University in Maastricht, The Netherlands, and a member of the Maastricht Brain Imaging Centre (M-BIC). Prior to her current assignments, she was a Senior Scientist at the Martinos Center for Biomedical Imaging, Harvard University. She received an MA in Philosophy, an MA in Experimental Psychology and a PhD in Philosophy from Louvain University in Belgium. Her current research focuses on face and body recognition and, recently, on the neuroscience of art.
PortraitChiaki Hayashi (JP) is the co-founder and is currently the Representative Director of Loftwork Inc. Loftwork succeeds to annually produce over 600 projects. She manages the operation of the company’s creative platform Loftwork.com which has 25,000 creators registered, FabCafe which is a cafe with digital fabrication tools, and a material-centered co-working office MTRL. She is currently Japan Liaison to the Director at the MIT Media Lab. She has recently founded “Hidakuma” which aims to rebuild nature and local creativity.
PortraitDr Drew Hemment (GB-SCT) is an artist, designer and academic researcher. He is Chancellors Fellow at Edinburgh Futures Institute, Project Lead of GROW Observatory, Founder of FutureEverything and on the Editorial Board of Leonardo. His work has been covered by New York Times, BBC and NBC and recognised by awards from the arts, technology and business sectors including STARTS Prize 2018 (Honarary Mention), Lever Prize 2010 (Winner) and Prix Ars Electronica 2008 (Honorary Mention).
PortraitAnja Hendel (DE) has been Director of Innovation Management and Digital Transformation for Finance at Porsche AG since 2017 and she works alongside Dr. Mahdi Derakhshanmanesh to head up the Porsche Digital Lab in Berlin. This technical laboratory is a platform for collaborating with technology companies, start-ups and scientific institutions, and deals with the practical application of concepts such as blockchain, artificial intelligence and the Internet of Things at Porsche. With a degree in business data processing, Anja Hendel worked as Assistant to the Chief Financial Officer at Porsche from 2015 onwards, and was responsible for the IT portfolio and strategy from 2013 onwards. Before joining Porsche, she managed various departments at former pharmaceutical company Celesio AG (now known as McKesson Europe AG) from 2007 onwards, including the “SAP services” and “IT project portfolio” departments. Prior to these roles, Hendel worked at Stuttgart-based consulting firm Capgemini Deutschland GmbH for six years.
PortraitHiroshi Ishii (JP/US) is the Jerome B. Wiesner Professor of Media Arts and Sciences at the MIT Media Lab. Joining the Media Lab in 1995, he founded the Tangible Media Group to make digital tangible by giving physical and dynamic form to digital information and computation. Here he pursues his visions of “Tangible Bits” (1997) and “Radical Atoms” (2012) that will transcend the current dominant paradigm of Human-Computer Interaction: “Painted Bits” of Graphical User Interfaces. For his visionary work in HCI, he was awarded tenure from MIT in 2001 and the SIGCHI Lifetime Research Award in 2019.
PortraitPascal Keiser (FR) has developed transversal projects between culture, digital society and economy since 2003. He is co-founder and general coordinator of French Tech Culture since the end of 2013, the national cultural and digital label of the French government. He is co-founder of The Bridge, European accelerator of startups on crossovers culture & technology in Avignon, and was director of Technocité Creative Industries Knowledge Center in Mons from 2007 to 2017. He also directed the digital program of Mons 2015, European Capital of Culture, and is a member of the steering committee of the new H2020 VERTIGO STARTS program.
PortraitKilian Kleinschmidt (DE) is an international networker, humanitarian and refugee expert with 30 years of experience in a wide range of countries, emergencies and refugee camps as United Nations official, Aid worker and Diplomat. He is the founder and Chairman of the startup Innovation and Planning Agency (IPA) which aims at connecting the millions of poor and disadvantaged with relevant and under-utilized resources and modern technologies of the 21st century through its project SWITXBOARD. He is part of a number of initiatives and Projects which aim at global connectivity through better use of globalization. He is currently developing a number of ventures which aim at sustainable investment and social impact in very fragile environments.
PortraitSophie Lamparter (CH) is founder and CEO of DART, a testing lab bringing Design, Art, Research and Technology together to create clever human-machine interfaces. DART works with research projects and early startups, enterprises and investors. Sophie Lamparter’s passion is finding new ideas and talent with a creative approach to technology. She helps them scale their ideas and consults with organization to challenge the status quo and launch new partnerships. Before starting DART, she was Associate Director at swissnex San Francisco, Switzerland’s Innovation outpost in Silicon Valley. Sophie Lamparter has organized and curated interdisciplinary exhibitions and programs in media, digital and data arts, interaction and game design, robotics, VR, AR, architecture and urbanism. She deputed as a STARTS Prize juror in 2017 and has spoken at international events such as SXSW in Austin, Gray Area in San Francisco and the Lift Conference in Geneva.
PortraitChristiane Luible (AT) is co-leader of the department Fashion & Technology at the University of Art and Design Linz. Her main field of interest is practice-led design research for the field of fashion design. At this, she focuses on the 3D modelling and virtual simulation of fashion and the influence of digital media on the process of fashion design. She received several international Design Award such as the Lucky Strike Junior Design Award. She collaborated on large European clothing research projects and is today responsible for the several research projects dealing with fashion and technology.
PortraitKenric McDowell (US) has worked at the intersection of culture and technology for twenty years. His résumé includes work for Nike, Focus Features, HTC Innovation and Google. He currently leads the Artists + Machine Intelligence program at Google Research, where he facilitates collaboration among Google AI researchers, artists and cultural institutions. Kenric McDowell’s work often draws from the history of culture and philosophy for metaphors and models that can be applied to emerging 21st century culture and technology.
PortraitMarta de Menezes (PT) is a Portuguese artist (Lisbon, 1975) with a degree in Fine Arts by the University in Lisbon, and a MSt in History of Art and Visual Culture by the University of Oxford. She has been exploring the interaction between Art and Biology, working in research laboratories demonstrating that new biological technologies, DNA, proteins and live organisms can be used as an art medium. Her work has been presented internationally in exhibitions, and articles. She is since 2005 artistic director of Ectopia – Experimental Art Laboratory and from 2009 director of Cultivamos Cultura – Association.
PortraitElaine W. Ng (KR) is the editor and publisher of ArtAsiaPacific, a 25-year old publication dedicated to contemporary art from Asia, the Pacific and the Middle East. In the mid-1990s she worked at Hanart TZ Gallery, a pioneer promoting contemporary art from China, Hong Kong and Taiwan. From the 2001-2002 Ms. Ng managed Videotage, one of Asia’s first non-profit organizations for film, video and new media. Ms. Ng currently sits on the advisory board of Asia Art Archive in Hong Kong, New Hall Art Collection at Cambridge University, and Alserkal Avenue in Dubai. Additionally, she lecturers at Hong Kong Baptist University’s Academy of Visual Arts and is a board member of Asia Art Archive in America, where she serves as secretary. Ms. Ng is based in Hong Kong.
PortraitBastian Schäfer (DE), born in 1980, is a maverick, kitesurfer, TED speaker, father of a boy and a girl and automotive engineer. After working at Volkswagen Design he entered Airbus in 2006 in different projects for A340, A350 and A380. In 2009 he joined the project team that created the award winning Airbus Concept Cabin with its’ bionic structure. Bastian Schäfer is the project leader of the Bionic Partition project where he is focussing on generative design combined with 3D printing technology.
PortraitHugues Vinet (FR) is the Coordinator of the VERTIGO project. He has been Director of Research and Development of IRCAM since 1994 and manages all related research, development and technology transfer activities. He previously headed the Musical Research Group of the French National Institute of Audiovisual where he developed advanced R&D in real-time audio signal processing and human-machine interfaces. He participates in many bodys of experts in the fields of audio, music, multimedia, information technology and technological innovation.
PortraitFilip Visnjic (UK) is a lecturer, curator and a media technologist born in Belgrade now living in London. He is the founder and editor-in-chief of CreativeApplications.net. The site tirelessly beat reports innovation and catalogues projects, tools and platforms at the intersection of art, media, and technology. In 2012, Filip Visnjic co-founded Resonate, educational platform and a festival located in Belgrade and same year launched HOLO, magazine about art, science and technology. He is currently ‘director of platform’ at FRM, working on a new canvas for digital art and he also lectures at a number of universities in the UK.
PortraitJo Wei (CN) is a curator, researcher and the founder of the Pan Bio-Art Studio (PBS). She is currently a researcher of Art, Science and Technology (AST) in the Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA). Her recent research interests include AST in a posthuman context, bio art/bio design, and others. Among the list of her many curations are Quasi-Nature [Bio Art, Borderline, Laboratory] (2019, Hyundai Motorstudio, Beijing), Kairos (2018, Ars Electronica, Linz), When Forms do not Become Attitude (2016, CAFAM, Beijing). Wei was also the co-curator of Ethics of Technology (2016) and Post-Life (2018), 1st and 2nd edition of Beijing Media Art Biennale.