VICE Goes Highbrow, Unleashes ‘The Creators Project’


So, VICE is holding a media event right now where they’re feeding media people lots of booze, and they’re telling them things while they do it. The gist is this: they got a bunch of money from Intel, and they’re not spending it on drugs. They’ve unleashed The Creators Project, which is three things: a “media channel,” a “content creation studio,” and a “a series of exhibition events and performances that will roll-out in different urban centers around the world the summer of 2010 and beyond.” Essentially, it’s an ambitious – albeit, semi-nebulous – initiative combining art and technology. It looks like South by Southwest with a passport and a bag full of anabolic steroids. But one thing’s for sure: There’s a lot of money involved here.

Take, for example, that jet they flew in. Or the shiny Creators Project website that just went live. So are the names: musicians Diplo, Phoenix, the Yeah Yeah Yeahs’ Nick Zinner, filmmaker Spike Jonze, video game artist Mark Essen, Mark Ronson, architects, street artists, and more, and they really did pick an incredibly diverse, ambitious selection. And much of the money goes to helping the artists create their art, and then – and this is the big gist of the project – helping them retain the rights for it. Which is, all things considered, a pretty wonderful thing (though it’d probably be worth reading the legalese on that when it comes in).

That said, ambitious is the operative term. The mediums are diverse; so much so, however, that they might detract from potential consumers of the project. And what – other than interviews with these artist, and concerts from them at some point – are consumers going to get?

Whatever it is, we’re gonna find out, because this thing’s got a whole-hog effort behind it. Wide-lens, though, this definitely represents another step forward for VICE, organizationally: Intel is a huge sponsor. It’s also a more corporate direction for them, moreso than ever before, and they don’t at all seem worried about alienating their core, original audience – crust-punk assholes – in light of the big paydays. Not that it didn’t happen already, but at this point, who can blame them? Then again, mo money, mo problems. VICE has always been able to deal with them so far. We’ll see if they can handle whatever new challenges await them with this thing, in regards to getting an engaged audience, and otherwise. Check it out here. Press release below.

NEW YORK (MAY 17, 2010) – Bringing together the world’s leading and most relevant innovators in music, art, film, design and architecture, VICE and Intel Corporation today launched The Creators Project, an unprecedented creative initiative designed to connect global youth through a common passion for creativity and technology.

The multi-year program is dedicated to identifying leading artists and enabling them to showcase their works and artistic visions through interactive media including creative conferences, new multi-disciplinary collaborative projects and a new video website, The carefully selected collection of more than 80 artists hailing from seven countries includes such established creative pioneers as Phoenix,
UNKLE, Stefan Sagmeister, Mira Calix and Nick Zinner from the Yeah Yeah Yeahs, as well as the next generation of innovators working in indie film, futuristic architecture, avant-garde electronica and fashion. These include Brazil’s Muti Randolph, China’s Peng Lei, the U.K.’s United Visual Artists, and the U.S.’ Radical Friend.
This diverse cast of creators is united by their shared belief that technology and its tools are catalysts to push artistic boundaries and bring
ideas to life.

The project is highlighted by The Creators Conference series. These five huge international events will bring thousands of people together for live concerts, art exhibits, film screenings and panel discussions. New York City hosts the first Creators Conference with an all-day extravaganza at Milk Studios. The eight-floor art gallery and performance space will host exhibits by Takeshi Murata, Karl Sadler, Mark Essen and Radical Friend, and performances by Mark Ronson, Interpol, Gang Gang Dance, N.A.S.A, Sleigh Bells and Salem.

The series will then move to London, Sao Paulo, Seoul, and concludes in Beijing with a three-day finale where participating artists and exhibits will be flown in from the across the globe. The Creators Project kicks off today with the launch of, an interactive portal and anthology which will house a selection of eighty-four original videos and featuring work and interviews from the most creative artists across the globe. The site is the nerve center for the entire initiative and will live-stream interviews, performances, exhibits and panel discussions from the Creators Conferences, allowing millions of viewers from across the globe to virtually participate.