Digital Cocooning (1995)

//:cocooning = publishing notes

After we had finished the ars electronica cdrom in summer 95, we immediately started producing the next one, an abstract piece of Station Rose art, called "Icons, Morphs & Samples". It was an audio cd (50min) plus an interactice section. When this CDextra came on the market february 95, we had already begun with the very first version of our homepage. Besides a visit to California, where we should meet Timothy Leary in his house for the last time, we were so immersed in the studio, that doing cdroms and creating the homepage morphed into one another. It was the combination of the music industry, and the Austrian Ministry for art & science, in the person of curator Stella Rollig, that made it possible for STR to work a whole year on the development of the homepage. Supported this way, we couldn´t stop finding new ways in our work. Sound&visuals played together. We experimented with and produced many versions of quicktime movies. We spent most of the time in the studio, doing fewer live performances than the years before. We eliminated shopping except for once a week. We stayed in the studio & in cyberspace, excluding R(eal) L(ife) a lot more than ever before. STR had arrived somewhere we always had wanted to be, in the interactive on/offline Gunafa environment. When becoming aware of our new lifestyle, we found a word for it -> "digital cocooning". One of the songs on the cd was called "mind children". It came out later as a single as well. This was where we were heading for.

And, when thinking about that term "digital cocooning", we observed that it consisted of 2 opposite parts- one was a 70% exclusion of RL, and the other was opening up to the biggest audience we ever had. All at the same time. We didn't go to the streets or clubs to get in contact with many people, we stayed in - and had 50.000 hits on our homepage, as well a the most press ever for the cd, this cause of the professional job PIAS/Jutta Baechner had done. And, she and Klaus Maeck had arranged the participation of Station Rose at the POPKOMM panel on Multimedia, one of our rare outdoor events during that period.

THROUGH DIGITAL COCOONING WE BECAME even more PUBLIC THAN BEFORE, reaching 10.000s of people while being in the studio was the clue.
When a little later in 1995 we tried to communicate as well as "sell" our experience to the german industry and the music/art scene to move on together, we didn´t get much response. Internet was no theme at all at that time. Almost nobody was into this, not many had even an email address. Only the German magazine SCREEN MULTIMEDIA was hooked, cause they updated their image, and for that were interested in a cooparation with artists. They offered us 5 full size, 4 colour pages to do our own thing, over half a year. It became the 3rd way to publish for Station Rose during that period. We created these pages with a lot of engagement, and were excited when they were published. They looked fab. Big. But, to our surprise, there was no feedback at all to it. We didn´t understand. Why were the Germans not more interested? Where was the problem? We would find out a lot later. It had to deal with the nonunderstanding of the new media, the new language of the net. When internet should become big, it would be more an invasion of the old media into the new one, but hardly a native thing. It would be a question of possessing and invading much more than anything else. This was the difficult as well as slow part of 1995.  elisa rose, on a hot summer day 98.