The English speaking master program Interface Cultures at the University of Arts in Linz was founded in 2004 by Christa Sommerer and Laurent Mignonneau. The program teaches students of human-machine interaction to develop innovative interfaces that harness new interface technologies at the confluence of art, research, application and design, and to investigate the cultural and social possibilities of implementing them.
Over the past thirdteen years, 148 students and guest researchers at the Interface Cultures Department have been developing interactive artworks, new interface solutions and prototypes that investigate the cultural and societal issues involved in participation and interaction. Around 200 projects were realised, and 49 master and doctoral theses were published. These range from investigations into the connection between interactive and participatory art, the aesthetics of interactivity, mediaarchaeological devices, newly developed musical instruments, playful and tangible interactions, research into human-plant interfaces, augmented social environments and brain-computer interfaces as well as novel interfaces for media façades, digital storytelling and healthcare, among others.
Over the past years, media art and contemporary art have also grown closer together, and technologically- supported art has finally entered the art market. All this provides a great context in which young students can engage in the ongoing development of interactive systems and forms of audience participation in accordance with current trends and developments in our society and art.