Feeling the Influence?

Within contemporary media culture, there is a breed of 'stars' that either acquire or fabricate their celebrity through an exploration of the conventions of fame, public relations, and discourse networks. Italian artists Eva and Franco Mattes (a.k.a. 0100101110101101.ORG) have given these people a name: The Influencers. From July 6-8, Barcelona's Center of Contemporary Culture will play host to a 'festival of media action and radical entertainment' by this title. In a sense, the moniker is perfect. The seven presenters they've selected for this third 'episode' of the program (Vuk Cosic, Paul D. Miller/ DJ Spooky, Molleindustria, Irwin/ Neue Slovenische Kunst, Vencenzo Sparanga, Oscar Brahim, and Chicks on Speed) have been highly influential in both their investigations into the influence of pop media on peoples and cultures and in influencing that media--in intervening in it. Appropriately, the festival will be organized in the format of a talk show: ' The live talk show you won't see on TV!' The event's press release promises that these icons will 'take us into stories of collective hallucinations that turn into reality and vice versa.' If you can't be present in Spain, visit the festival's website for a video highlight reel from previous 'episodes.' - Marisa Olson