In September 1996, ISEA brought together scientists, artists, writers and educators in a frurtful exchange over the state of Electronic Art. Following succesful symposia in Groningen, Utrecht, Sydney, Minneapolis, Helsinki. and Montreal, the ISEA symposia have grown in both popularity and importance as electronic art gains acceptance as a mainstream mode of artistic expression. The ISEA symposia play a continuing role in this development. With the establishment of a new headquarters in Montreal, Canada, ISEA promises to play an even larger role In the development of electronic art. In the invitation of speakers, and in the call for papers, the ISEA Program committee set as themes “Education as a Bridge between Art and Science” and “Networked Art”. From the content of these proceedings, one can see that ISEA went far in exploring these ideas. In their realisation, ISEA presented a kaleidoscopic programme consisting of: *Paper Presentations, *Poster Sessions, *Panel & Roundtable discussions, *Electronic Theater *Print & Slide Exhibition *Evening of Concerts & Performances *Special Events Beyond this, the 500 participants of ISEA were truly diverse as well. Coming from 30 different countries they represented a wide range of disciplines; from computer animators, computer musicians, sculptors, and multimedia artists to philosophers, computer scientists, art critics and art educators, as well many multitalented individuals who fall into no clear category. ISEA was but one part of an extraordinarily active month in Rotterdam. ISEA worked in cooperation with The Dutch Electronic Art Festival (DEAF96) as well as being part of the larger new media festival R96. All three groups worked together to create one of the largest New Media ‘happenings’ ever held in the Netherlands. To those who participated, I hope you enjoyed being part of ISEA as much as we enjoyed organizing it.
I would like to extend special thanks to our International Program Committee upon whom the content of ISEA so much depended. Peter Beyls: (Belgium), Paul Brown (Australia), Mike Chanowski (Netherlands), Rene Coelho (Netherlands). Achamyeleh Debela (USA), Anton van Gemert (USA). Michael Girard (USA), Craig Harris (USA), Theo Hesper (Netherlands), Pierre Levy (France), Raymond Lauzzana (France), Thomas Linehan (USA), Roger Malina (USA), Alain Mongeau (Canada), Jos de Mul (Netherlands), Cynthia Beth Rubin (USA), Joel Ryan (Netherlands), Kersuke Oki (Japan), Christine Schopf (Austria), Roman Verostko (USA), John Vince (UK), lannis Xenakis (France), Siegfried Zielinski (Germany). And last, one must not forget Wim van der Plas. acting as our Program Chair, who brought ISEA into existence.
Michael B. Roetto (USA/NL) studies music at the Rotterdam Music Conservatory and worked as a volunteer for ISEA96. He is the editor of the ISEA96 Proceedings.