Oliver Grau - Biography#


Univ.-Prof. Dr. habil. Dr. h.c. Oliver Grau is a leading figure of the new discipline Image Science with a special focus on Media Art research and the intersections of art, science and technology. His pioneering book "Virtual Art. From Illusion to Immersion", MIT Press, offered for the first time a historic comparison and evolution in image-viewer theory of immersion and was groundbreaking in Image Science. The publication was selected as “Scientific American Book of the Month” and received more than 75 international reviews, with more than 2000 citations (H-Index). Besides W.J.T. Mitchell’s “What Do Pictures Want?”, it is the most quoted book in Art History worldwide since the year 2000 and fostered Image Science and Emotion Research with special regard of new image worlds.

Grau taught at Humboldt University Berlin and served as professor at several international universities. In 2005, he was appointed the first Chair Professor of Image Science in the German speaking countries at Danube University. He was invited to more than 300 lectures world wide, is translated in 14 languages and received various awards. His projects have been supported by the Berlin-Brandenburg Academy of Sciences, the Leopoldina, DFG (German Research Foundation), the Australian Research Council and the Austrian Science Fund (total 8.3 mio EUR). His summer academies on emotion research have been supported by the VW Foundation.

Grau was founding director of the MediaArtHistories Conference Series, (Banff 2005, Berlin07, Melbourne09, Liverpool11, Riga13, Montreal15, Krems/Vienna17, Aalborg19, Venice22). The volume MediaArtHistories, MIT Press 2007, received 50+ international reviews. "Imagery in the 21st Century", MIT-Press 2011 opened the field of Image Science. Recently: Museum and Archive on the Move (2017), Digital Art under the Looking Glas (2019) and Retracing Political Dimensions (2021).

He developed new international curricula for Image Science MA, MediaArtHistories MA and the Erasmus + Joint Master of excellence “Media Arts Cultures” supported by the EU with 5.4 mio EUR. Grau conceived a number of new image and data archiving tools for image science / digital humanities with an innovative collective approach and new web 2.0 features (e.g. http://www.virtualart.at). He also renewed the research of Baroque art with high-resolution digitization, web-based research of the Göttweig print collection (http://www.gssg.at).
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