AHA: Activism – Hacking – Artivism
AHA: Activism-Hacking-Artivism Project is an initiative started in 2001 by Tatiana Bazzichelli as part of a plan to promote art on the internet and to give a higher profile to Italian digital culture. According to this, AHA has contributed to the creation of a vast network of relations and projects.
The main concepts of AHA are activism = political activism, hacking = technological activism, artivism = artistic activism. The political aim of AHA relates to the acknowledgement of the net as a political space, with the possibility of decentralized, autonomous and grassroots democratic participation: access for everybody, information as a free good and the conscious, non-commercial use of hardware and technology – the basic concepts of hacker ethics – are referred to in this project as political objectives. It follows a collective path, as result of an Italian movement that since the beginning of the eighties has been struggling for the independent and self-managed use of the mass-media (video, computer, radio and written text). Today more than ever, this movement is proving to be one of the most valid alternatives to official information in Italy.
Principal activities of AHAproject are the organization of exhibitions / events about Italian net art and hacktivism, the diffusion of Italian collective artistic projects within new-media art festivals or conventions, and the development of an international mailing list on artistic activism.
In the evolution of the AHA, an artistic networking project took place in 2006 with the publication of a book,Networking: The Net as an Artwork (Costa & Nolan, Milan, 2006), as a first tentative reconstruction of the history of artistic networking in Italy.
The AHA: Activism-Hacking-Artivism project is hosted by Isole nella Rete (www.ecn.org). Isole nella Rete hosts the majority of alternative radical, underground Italian websites. Created in 1996, it is considered the oldest counter-culture server in Italy.