Impakt Festival 2012: No more westerns

In 2012, the Impakt Festival heralds the end of the dominance of the Western media culture. Central to the 23rd edition of the Impakt Festival will be the changes within the media landscape as a result of the drastic economical and geopolitical shifts on the world stage.

Two festival curators have been assigned to compile the No More Westerns programme: Cher Potter and Samantha Culp. Alongside them, Indian academic Parmesh Shahani has been appointed festival fellow in collaboration with the Centre for Humanities and the Master’s study programme New Media & Digital Culture at Utrecht University.

We are very comfortable with the West’s leading role in the global media industry. However, in the near future, European and North American countries will have to relinquish this dominant role to a number of rapidly developing economies. Global image culture – as disseminated by TV, the media, the film industry and the internet – will no longer solely be based on ‘our’ culture and history, and inside the next few decades its appearance is set to change radically.

How will this process develop? Which visual language, icons and symbols will be mixed with ours? How will these changes take place in countries where the regime monitors cultural production? The 2012 Impakt Festival’s No More Westerns programme will examine the new guises and myths of this transitioning media landscape?

Impakt has invited two festival curators to develop the No More Westerns theme: Californian curator and author Samantha Culp, who currently lives in Shanghai, and South African researcher and writer Cher Potter who resides in London. They are working on a programme which will highlight the typical elements of the rising super powers’ image industries. The programme’s various elements will be substantiated on the basis of the latter, augmented by contributions from correspondents, experts, curators and artists from around the world. From the festival exhibition at the CBKU [Utrecht centre for the visual arts] to events, workshops and lectures, the 2012 Impakt Festival 2012 will provide an exciting preview of the imminent changes to our visual culture.

No More Westerns: Step into the world of Afrofuturisme, Golly-, Bolly-, Nollywood, c-pop, j-pop, k-pop and the Grass Mud Horse. With bold extrapolations, harmonic ideals, dystopian visions, historical analysis and new myths.