Ieva Auzina on Thu, 5 Jul 2001 23:59:34 +0200 (CEST)

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<nettime> nice Interfund report

Greetings everybody!

Late, yet here it comes: short report about Interfund meeting, which took
place in Stockholm 3 weeks ago.

Enjoy the sun and contribute to the Interfund!


In Stockholm, June 15 - 17, 2001.


Sometimes good ideas cannot find their "home". They need to rest for a
while (in Interfund's case - few years) to be born again…

The idea about INTERFUND - mutual support structure for new media culture
initiatives first was introduced in 1998, during the Interfund meeting @
Xchange Unlimited in Riga in the regional Nordic/Baltic context. It was
launched by Rasa Smite, Diana McCartney, Pit Shultz, Eric Kluitenberg and
Manu Luksch. "First of all the Interfund was an idea to create better ways
to access funding and create funding possibilities of itself. […] The
Interfund should rather act as a "Resource Pool", shared by each of its
members.[..] This initiative also wants to address the need to create less
bureaucratic structures.[..] every new member has to commit him or herself
to contributing to the shared pool of resources in some way, by donating
skills, knowledge, and a willingness to multilateral co-operation." (Full
history of Interfund is available at

This summer from June 15 - 17, 2001 CRAC (Creative room for art and
computing) in Stokholm, with special input by curators Nils Claeson and
Karin Hansson, coordinators Anita Malmqvist and Pernilla Carlsson Sjodin
and chairman of CRAC board Gunnel Petterson, organised a conference and a
show MONEY - a commentary on the new economy, which provided a perfect
context for further development/continuation of INTERFUND, this time
within the Nordic/Baltic NICE network.

First day - Saturday June, 16: 
open seminars and "Monetary life" panel discussions

Open seminars took place at Kulturhuset. First part of the day
participating artists introduced to their works in the MONEY exhibition
context and a lecture "Object-Form and Commodity Form" was presented by
Sven-Olof Wallenstein. (full text as well as project descriptions
available at

"Monetary life"  - the second part of the day was more practical and gave
a clear working framework for next day's NICE Interfund meeting.
"Emperor's New Interfaces: Old Economy, Old Media and the Rhetoric of the
New" - research by Tapio Makela (M-cult, Finland) was presented during
afternoon panel, and brought up some essential points about transnational
new media activities in the national economical situations. This and other
main conclusions of Tapio's research where later implemented in the
conceptual bone of the Interfund.

Tulipomania - critical research into new economy by Eric Kluitenberg
(Amsterdam) was also presented at the same panel and continued with
introducing more practical examples about the failures of so called "new
economy's" business strategies. E.Kluitenberg's research, offered
transparent inside of how one can operate with the powerful force called
"money", and showed, how real numbers (thousands, millions, etc.)
represent virtual money, and what are the consequences of that. Strategic
use of numbers, that don't represent any real cash flow but rather
evaluate one's resources - also became one of the main tactics for
development of the Interfund.

Second day - June, 17: 

This can be considered 3rd Interfund meeting (1st one - 1998 in Riga, 2nd
- 1999 during "Next 5 Minutes" in Amsterdam) and was one of the most
practical days in NICE history. All results: Interfund logo, policy,
documents, membership, etc. of this intense working session will be soon
available at the Interfund website: <>

After a short and very concise introduction to Interfund by Rasa Smite
(Riga) and Kristin Bergaust (Oslo) NICE people joined 4 working groups:

1.Implementation  - mod. Kristin Bergaust
2.Design - mod. Manu Luksch
3.Website development - mod. Rasa Smite
4.Documents, policy, theory - mod. Eric Kluitenberg and Tapio Makela

The summary (by Kristin Bergaust)
of the Implementation workshop gives the most concise view about the
meeting and the idea of the Interfund:


Interfund is a working economic model for valuating resources present in
the network, a translocal resource pool.  Interfund can make work and
resources that are important parts of what we are doing economically
visible.  This has a political side: claiming that networking is valuable
assets in our projects. Numbering resources (Katja) This is not fraud or
fake, but a parallel to what you normally do when you name and quantify
resources (your work, your computers, your space etc) you already possess
as part of your budget for a project. This is allowed for in most
applications, except some instances of EU-programs. We will be open about
this model and willing to explain the model of Interfund to funding
institutions or anyone else that will ask. Interfund can be envisioned as
an art project, a practical tool, a cultural policy statement and all this
at once. Resources are being generated, offered and shared through
exchange and co-operation in the network.

Practical use:

This is a working economic model as long as you claim Interfund as support
in terms of resources, not as financial funding.

To use Interfund in a budget, it is necessary to quantify the Interfund
support as part of the financial plan.  That is to say that Interfund
support is resources "in kind" present in NICE (and possibly other similar
networks). How much this is abstract or concrete material for use is a
question.  Probably it can be used in different ways, depending on the
context. It can be interesting to make case studies of projects already
done, analysing how much valuable resources was found through
co-operation, information resources and other resources supplied by
networks. (I hope you did that after I left CRAC on Sunday)

At a later stage it can be of value to register and make accessible a list
of resources and assets related to Interfund to put a concrete
documentation behind the claim of resources and to let the members know
what the accessible, offered resources are.

Interfund should have a representative web-site explaining what it is,
with information about which organisations are part of it and some contact
information.  I offered to be a contact person presented with a phone
number on the page.  Another part of the web-site should be a protected
area for members only

Once Interfund support is named in an application, this should be reported
on the membership area of the web-site.  If a project gets additional
support in the form of funding (real money) it should be reported as well
for the purpose of documentation of how and if it works.  Projects that
are done with Interfund support should be presented on the public part of
the web-site.


Who can use Interfund?  In principle the NICE is a network based on trust.
Interfund could function the same way, but with an additional condition
being that the applicant could offer some resource for the network. This
should also be visible on the web-site.Members will get access to the
closed area of the web-site.


Interfund is a unique support body, open for resource exchange and
strategic use for further development of new media networked culture not
only in NICE Nordic/Baltic region. In fact, so far, nice attitude towards
nice ideas and people has always brought new people to this networked
region. This time those were projects from Zagreb, Croatia: Zdenko Buzek,
Andreja Kuluncic, from Kiev, Ukrain: Natalya Manzhaliy and Kateryna
Stukalova, and Elena Tsvetaeva from Kaliningrad and Katja Lindqvist
(Marketing Deapartment, School of Business, Stockholm). And of course, it
is always exciting to see "old" faces, such us Gediminas Urbonas from
VILMA (Vilnius, Lithuania) and Marta van der Haagen from Warsaw, Poland.
And if you check participant list, please pay special attention to strength in NICE network!

Keeping in mind Interfund's artistic qualities - it could be considered as
the first NICE art (strategic art) project (Lena), one should also not
forget the serious potential of such networked and shared economic model.

Next step:
Next project you start - Use Intefund and let Interfund use you =
(share your resources and responsibility) !

Have a nice summer!

report by Ieva Auzina
RIXC project coordinator




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