The advancement of new digital technologies has significantly reshaped all of society and culture. Be it from an enthusiastic point of view that will stress the progressiveness of new media, or from a hesitant perspective that will regard them as a cultural regression – digital technology and networks are both exciting and confusing, but still in want of an adequate understanding.
The matter of concern thus becomes to envision new cultural, political and artistic forms and codes of socialization that will accommodate those fundamental changes. Rapid evolution of information technologies has brought an unprecedented degree of free expression, but at a high price of accelerating the tendencies of fragmentation within societies. In the time of information overflow a single, atomized unit of information has been rendered senseless by the sheer abundance of information available at a mouseclick. And as many cultural commentators will say: depression, panic and over excitement are just different names for the same underlining cause, ie. a techno-culture that is out-of-control.
Hence, the need for action and reflection that will bring together culture, society and technology. The Enlightenment era has forged the concept of aesthetic education as a model to deal at once with the phenomena of (political) revolution, (technological) evolution – print and publishing – and cultural change (emerging literary public). And as much as the project of Enlightenment might have become troubled, concept of aesthetic education has lost little of its fascination. The driving idea behind this project was to re appropriate this very concept of aesthetic education, investigating if it is able to offer an upgraded and expanded version that will manage to create a new common space where people, devices and ideas meet.