Montreal, September 1st, 2020 — Montreal Digital Spring (Printemps numérique), host of the 26th edition of the International Symposium on Electronic Art, is thrilled to announce the complete official programme, with over 300 international speakers and artists from over 40 countries.

In our time of unprecedented upheaval, ISEA2020 and Montreal Digital Spring (Printemps numérique) have developed the 2020 edition in response to the current circumstances and with their shared ethos—community, exchange, and technological innovation—at heart. The result is an entirely virtual interactive symposium accessible to anyone anywhere in the world; a symposium that truly inhabits the digital space.

From October 13 to the 18, participants will be able to actively engage in conferences, posters, artistic programme and workshops, and engage with speakers, artists and other attendees to foster the creative and professional dialogues and connections that are at the core of ISEA.

Photo © Clea T. Waite – Ice-Time: Immersive Cine-installation and Embodied Perception

Today, the theme of ISEA2020 – Why Sentience? – resonates more than ever. What does it mean to feel and to perceive during these unstable times? How do we foster connections across communities, generations, and borders through a screen? The value of our innate differences and the ways in which we come together is critical to our current survival and growth. The programme of the 26th edition of ISEA opens into reflection on the sociopolitical, environmental and technological modes of experience that allow breaking the distance as much as they mediate remote dialogue.


  • From 7:00 am to 7:00 pm (GMT-5) from October 13 to 16, the academic programme and talks — including keynote speakers, paper presentations, posters, institutional presentations, artist talks and workshops — will be entirely presented through an online platform by Swapcard, which allows networking and exchanges between registered participants during presentation sessions and throughout the duration of the symposium: • Three simultaneous broadcasting channels dedicated to the academic programme;
  • With the exception of the three keynote speakers and posters, presentations will be pre-recorded and broadcast to ensure the quality and fluidity of the programme. Each session will include live question-and-answer periods with the speakers and the session Chair.

HYBRID ARTISTIC PROGRAMME  The artistic programme presents a selection of 80 artworks by 105 local and international artists including installations, videos, VR pieces, web art, online performances, and interventions in the public space, which can be experienced on the ISEA2020 online platform and on a dedicated website. While we are aware that our proposed online solutions do not replace the real, embodied experience of the artworks, we hope the artistic programme can, in this way, enter a dialogue with the academic programme of the symposium.

While we do not encourage delegates to travel to Montreal specifically for ISEA2020, given that some social distancing and congregation restrictions were recently lifted, we have resumed collaborations with some partner organizations in Montreal. A small number of artworks by local artists will be exhibited at Maison de la culture Claude-Léveillée and Maison de la culture Janine Sutto, and a programme of interventions will be presented in public spaces. These works will also be documented on the ISEA2020 Online platform and on the artistic programme website.


SPECIAL EVENTS NOT TO MISS! Delegates are also invited to special events, including the Summit on New Media Art Archiving, also to take place online on October 16, coordinated by representatives from the ISEA Symposium Online Archive, the Archive of Digital Art (ADA), the Ars Electronica Archive and the SIGGRAPH Digital Art Show Archive.

Composite #25 will take place on October 15, in collaboration with CREO. Six to eight artists, creators, and digital entrepreneurs will share their initiatives with professionals from various backgrounds and with the general public. This event is Free. Register to receive the link.


ISEA2020 Online stands for the creativity pavilion of MTL connect: Digital Week. There are two distinct virtual platforms for MTL Connect and ISEA2020, but delegates registered for ISEA2020 will have full access to both.


Sue Gollifer is currently the Director of the ISEA International Headquarters. She is an artist, a Principal Lecturer in Fine Art and the Course Leader for Digital Media Arts MA and a researcher and curator at the University of Brighton, UK. She is on a number of National and International Committees, including (CAS) the Computer Arts Society, (DAM), Digital Art Museum, and (DAC) the ACM SIGGRAPH Digital Arts Community. She is currently the ACM Chair of ‘The Distinguished Artist Award for Lifetime Achievement in Digital Art’.

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