The transmedia Spanish project called Cyborg Project has won one of the six categories (Create your culture) in the European Youth Award Festival. Previously, in June 2013, the feature documentary has won the Teens&Doc Award in the DocsBarcelona International Documentary Film Festival.
About the Festival
The European Youth Award (EYA) is an annual festival held in Graz, Austria organized by the International Centre for New Media (ICNM). It is a contest that connects and promotes the talent of young Europeans aged under 30 who use the Internet and new technologies in order to innovate in the social sphere, make the world a better place and contribute to achieving the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations (NGOs). The competition categories are: Fighting poverty, Hunger and disease; Education for all; Power for women; Create your culture; Protect the environment; and Defend truth.
The winners were invited, all expenses paid, to the awards ceremony, which was held from 28 to 30 November in the city of Graz (Austria), declared a UNESCO city of design and cultural heritage of humanity. The event is a unique opportunity to present the project in front of professionals from around the world, meet people with the same ambitions and interests (as well as government leaders from many countries, representatives of NGOs, the United Nations, entrepreneurs, business people, share ideas and initiatives with exceptional people from different countries, gain allies to support and promote projects in the EYA network and ultimately become part of this community committed to young people.
From right to left: Josep Cumeras, Raymond Lagonigro, Roger Soldevila and Arnau Gifreu. Only Isaac Martinez could not come to Graz to receive the award.
About the Project Cyborg
The story behind
Neil Harbisson was born of an Irish father and a Catalan mother on July 27, 1982, in London, where he lived for the first years of his childhood, until he and his family moved to the town of Mataró (Spain). As a child, he had had difficulty distinguishing colors, which was attributed to a problem of daltonism. It was only when he was eleven years old that, after a series of eye tests, he was diagnosed with achromatopsia, an irreversible visual impairment that prevents him from recognizing color. That is why he sees in grayscale.
Achromatopsia (color blindness), also known as monochromatism, is a genetic disease, congenital, stationary (non-progressive) and X-chromosome related. It consists of a defect of vision, called “bilateral peripheral retinopathy”, which causes those suffering this condition to see colors only in grayscale. These people are therefore blind to color, with very low visual acuity and various problems in spaces with bright light.
The eyeborg is an electronic device that can perceive colors through the person’s ear. It was developed by Neil Harbisson and Adam Montandon in 2004. It is a small sensor placed at eye level and is fixed to Neil’s head by a wire that carries the color information into a computer or chip. This device converts the electromagnetic waves of light into sound frequencies which can be interpreted as musical notes.
Fro further reading, download this document about the art of Neil Harbisson.
Idea and concept
The development of a cross-platform and transmedia project with the intention of recreating in different ways, using technology, the experience of not perceiving colors. The different parts of the project aim to invite the spectator, participant and interactor to experience different ways of perceiving and relating to the world of color, to thereby form an approximate idea of what others feel and, thus, of the way they think and operate in different possible realities based on perception systems.
Parts of the transmedia project
Neil Harbisson’s Personal Website
Cyborg Foundation Portal
Activities – Training
And more to come in 2014…
– Interactive Installation
– Augmented Reality Game
– Google Glass App
Dr. Arnau Gifreu
Researcher, lecturer and producer