Photo: La Societe Anonyme Published under CC0 (Public Domain) Courtesy: Koninklijke Bibl iotheek, Den Haag, 2229 R 20

17th Art Division New Face Award

The SKOR Codex

Graphic art

La Societe Anonyme [France]


The SKOR Codex is a printed book which was sent to different locations on Earth in 2012. It contains binary encoded image and sound files portraying the diversity of life and culture at the Foundation for Art and Publ ic Domain (SKOR), and is intended for any intelligent terrestrial life form, or future humans, who may find it. The files are protected from bitrot, software decay and hardware failure via a transformation from magnetic transitions on a disk to ink on paper, safe for centuries. Instructions in a symbolic language explain the origin of the book and indicate how the content is to be decoded. La Societe Anonyme noted that “the package will be encountered and the book decoded only if there will be advanced civilizations on Earth in the far future. But the launching of this ‘bottle’ into the cosmic ‘ocean’ says something very hopeful about art on this planet.”

Reason for Award

La Societe Anonyme is a collective of four artists, formed in 2013 in protest at cuts in the arts by the Dutch government. Based in Amsterdam, this is their debut work, a:6time capsule book that aims to fight against the current state of affairs and use advanced media to preserve the richness of contemporary lifestyle and the diversity of artistic culture for eternity. Its grandiose, ingenious purport and exhaustive diagrams were both highly acclaimed. Three of the eight volumes produced have already been placed in safekeeping in major libraries overseas, and it isplanned for the fourth book to be kept in Japan. (OKABE Aomi)