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Signaling Smartness: Smart Cities and Digital Art in Public Spaces  

Littwin, Karolina (Department of Art History, Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf)
Stock, Wolfgang G. (Department of Art History, Heinrich Heine University Dusseldorf)
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Journal of Information Science Theory and Practice / v.8, no.1, 2020 , pp. 20-32 More about this Journal
Informational urbanism is a new research area in information science. In this study, art history joins informational urbanism: Are digital artworks in public urban spaces recognized as essential assets of a smart city? We employed case study research, working with the example of the huge digital media façade of the Arthouse Graz as an artwork in a public space. In a mixed-methods approach, we asked passers-by and interviewed experts on Graz as a smart city and on the Arthouse's role concerning the image of Graz as a smart city. The research found strong hints that indeed digital artworks with large screens or media façades at public spaces are parts of a city's weak location factors as well as of the city's urban structure and may symbolize the city's smartness. A practical implication of this finding is that artists, computer and information scientists, city planners, and architects should include interactive contemporary digital art into city spaces in order to demonstrate the city's way towards knowledge society.
informational urbanism; smart city; digital art; public space; media facade; Arthouse Graz (Austria);
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