Trbovlje is a small post-industrial town of 16,000 people. It used to be a very important coal mining center from which a rich culture has emerged (most notably Laibach group). After the collapse of Yugoslavia and the industry, the closure of the mine, the town fell into economic decline and a kind of depression.
Trbovlje new media setting (TNM) initiative took place in Delavski dom Trbovlje (a public cultural institution) with the idea of changing the identity of the town inhabitants from the ‘we used to be miners’ into a new, more prosperous ‘we are a town, where robots help children cross the street’. Humanisation of technology.
Speculum Artium, an annual new media culture festival was born in 2009 and it grew into one of the most prominent festivals in the Central Europe. During these years we have hosted many prominent and aspiring artists like Stelarc, Hiroshi Ishiguro, Victoria Vesna, Laibach, Milica Zec, and many others. Every year we also cooperate with art academies and schools from around Europe.
Last year Delavski dom also opened an art research lab and is a leader of Network of Art and Culture Research Centers (MCRUK) which further enables the festival and wider community