On Eyebeam and the messy importance of radical democracy - Technical.ly Brooklyn


Mar. 14, 2016 12:45 pm

On Eyebeam and the messy importance of radical democracy

Trying to revamp a residency program? Invite the input of 300-plus.

At Eyebeam's 2015 Annual Showcase.

(Photo by Brady Dale)

Let’s explore the sexy world of corporate governance this rainy Monday morning.

Imagine an all-power startup founder as a king, or in more contemporary parlance, a dictator. Public corporations and nonprofits with boards of directors are oligopolies, with a few important men and women getting around a big table and hashing out the direction in which company ought to go. And we could imagine a publicly-held company as having shareholders that vote annually on important decisions, but in reality these votes are typically a mere formality.

Real democracy is happening right here in Brooklyn, at one of its most interesting and most radical institutions: Eyebeam.

“We’ve drawn up plans to invite back all those who know Eyebeam best — all three hundred plus of them — to our Brooklyn headquarters to redesign the core residency program,” Eyebeam director Roddy Schrock wrote in a blog post. “Our alums bring in collective wisdom in everything from successful art careers to billion dollar businesses. They’re exactly the people we need to listen to, and we’ll be taking a lot of notes.”

Eyebeam, which is in its 19th year of existence, offers fellowships to promising artists working on innovating or doing something radical in art. Many of its fellows and their works turn to new technologies in this pursuit, which is why they interest us. (This article from last year goes into four art/tech mashups that came out of Eyebeam.)

So the institution, which typically awards its fellowships in the spring, will hold off on doing that until it has a massive weekend meeting with as many of its alumni as want to intend. Should be interesting. We’ll see how they decide to work the program.

Here’s two cheers for democracy in a month that needs them.

Organizations: Eyebeam


New York City Council adopts civic-tech hack as its own

How these artists hacked a museum and held their own show on visitors’ phones

Get a new experience with sound at this ~aural~ art show



Explore how diverse teams build dynamic products with Dev Bootcamp

Philadelphia, PA OR Remote

Stitch, Inc.

Director, Alliances

Apply Now

The One and Only Corp

iOS/Android Developer

Apply Now

Meet the second cohort of impact orgs in the Brooklyn Foundation’s incubator program

What you don’t know about VR and AR that you should: 5 Brooklyn experts weigh in

The creator of NYU’s virtual-reality Hamlet is fundraising to take his show on the road



Learn from these Brooklyn founders in our Tomorrow Toolkit ebook

Sign-up for daily news updates from Technical.ly

Do NOT follow this link or you will be banned from the site!