Eyebeam is a nonprofit studio for collaborative experiments with technology toward a more imaginative and just world. By providing generous support to artists for research, production and education, Eyebeam makes ideas real.
Model of Practice
As the leading arts organization for technology in the United States, Eyebeam grounds its unique model of practice on the following assertions:
- Ideas work. With critical knowledge of the world, people can create a better one.
- Process matters. Nothing is more powerful than expectation-free experimentation.
- Impact counts. When ideas work together, the effects can cascade exponentially.
The vision of technology here includes all processes, tools and strategies for navigating a complex world. The residency program provides people with space and time to develop their ideas into full projects. Drawing entirely on the community of residents and alums, Eyebeam then expands their work into exciting programs with lasting impact.
Founded in 1997 in Brooklyn by John S. Johnson before moving to an iconic warehouse on West 21st street, Eyebeam was conceived as the very first critical space of its kind, for thinking creatively about how technology was transforming the world. As Chelsea changed, Eyebeam returned to Brooklyn and settled into a former industrial complex overlooking the East River. The new studio hosted the first annual Eyebeam Award for Creativity and Courage, and the renewal of the core program. In those (nearly) two decades, Eyebeam has made a habit of breaking new ground. You may know of:
- The first ever online “sharing” protocol and foundation of the social web, ReBlog
- The first ever “edit-a-thon”, focused on contemporary art in Wikipedia
- The first ever digital education summer camp, Digital Day Camp
- The first ever public demo of a 3D printer, the Makerbot
- The first ever C-based creative coding platform, OpenFrameworks
- The first projection-based street art, Graffiti Research Lab
- The first comprehensive rap lyrics database, for the Rap Research Lab
- The first Arabic programming language that was also an art project, قلب
- The first program in Computational Fashion,
- and many other firsts.