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The GOGBOT festival is an annual festival, organized by PLANETART. The festival deals with subjects on the area of multimedia, art, music and technology. GOGBOT is a free entrance festival and wants to take art of international quality out of the museums and make it accessible for a broad audience, by presenting it in public space. Also part of the yearly program are lectures, a film program and the Youngblood award. Here the work of graduates of Dutch art academies are presented. The festival takes place and takes place in Enschede, near the German border in the Netherlands, on a yearly base and counts around 20,000 visitors. GOGBOT is known for its controversial themes.
The name GOGBOT originally exists of two parts: BOT because of the admiration of robotics and GOG because of its double meaning, on one hand the reference to the famous Dutch painter Vincent van Gogh, on the other hand GOGO, which means “a bit crazy”.
Every year, GOGBOT presents the newest electronic music from London and Berlin. Examples include Alec Empire (Atari Teenage Riot), Huoratron, Bonaparte, Otto von Schirach, DMX Krew, Clark, Caspa, The Birthday Party, Jason Forrest, Teknoist, Botborg, gay against you, Ceephax Acid Crew, μ-Ziq, Noisia, Bong-Ra, Dat Politics, Richard Devine, T. Raumschmiere, Schlachthofbronx, Carsten Nicolai, Byetone, Bar9 and Étienne de Crécy.
GOGBOT always works with a controversial topic that responds to developments in the news. Previous years’ themes were Mediapolis, Steampunk, Atompunk, Technological Singularity, Japanoiiid and internet_memes. Remarkably, the festival always contains one or more elements that cause a commotion. Examples are the “car bomb wrecks from Baghdad” by artist Jonas Staal, the “machine containing panties worn by young girls” of artist TINKEBELL, “workplace for terrorists” of Atelier Van Lieshout and the action of FEMEN international when topless activists chainsawed three Christian crosses as symbol of repression from women by the church and other religions.
The festival originates from several festivals that PLANETART organized earlier in the center of Enschede, i.e. in empty warehouses, on squares, in Music venues, examples are the Gods must be Crazy, Op Drift, Sociale Dienst, RealAudio, Exploding Digita, Astro Friezen, etc. In 2013 the 10th edition of the festival takes place. GOGBOT is founded by Creative Director Kees de Groot. Wilja Jurg was Managing Director from 2004 until 2007, after that Viola van Alphen took her place in the festivals’ organization.
Because of the accessible form and innovative approach, GOGBOT receives international recognition. Therefore, GOGBOT is invited for presentations including the ISEA in Singapore, Cellsbutton Indonesia, the Transmediale in Berlin, International Filmfestival Moscow, World Expo 2010, Japan Media Arts Festival 2011 and Techfest 2012. In 2011 the festival was rewarded the National Innovation Award, as being the most innovative festival in the Netherlands.
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