MOOC Artist Website Challenge: I’m announcing a €100 prize for the MOOC Classmate who can create the new, or update the existing, website-blog with the most urgency in a month. Read on for details.

Artist Website Challenge: MOOC Artist-Scholar Website-Blog X-Prize logo


Artist Website Challenge: sample screencap of artist's website
The more we share our ideas, our process, our work, the more engaged and informed we become ourselves, and the richer our contribution to our communities becomes.

While the empowerment of humans, including artists, has a long way to go, I do believe that on 9 November 2013 more human beings have a voice than on any previous day in all of human history. I’d like to do some small thing to amplify those voices if I can.

MOOC Classmate Website-Blogs

I’ve been trolling the profiles of my classmates in the MOOCs:
Practice Based Research in the Arts from Stanford / NovoED
Creating Site-Specific Dance & Performance Works from CalArts / Coursera
The Future of Storytelling from Potsdam / iversity

I’ve posted some micro-profiles of my classmates on my website:
Virtual Public / PBR Classmates
Virtual Public / Site-Dance Classmates

The classmates I’ve featured are amazing. There are many others who are equally amazing. I haven’t featured them only because I couldn’t find their websites. In some cases they don’t have one. In some cases they do but they didn’t list it on their NovoED, Coursera, or iversity profile and Google wasn’t Feeling Lucky about my search query.

Artist Website Challenge

Artist Website Challenge: sample screencap of artist's website
I can’t offer a real X-Prize for millions. But what about a micro-X prize? An Artist Website Challenge to help everyone have a better presence online? After all, while the money is motivating, really, it’s just a little extra incentive to do what you already wanted to do anyway, right? Your passion, plus a little incentive prize, equals a better presence and a stronger community before this year is over:
Passion + Urgency = Awesome Artist Website in a month!

I’d like to put up a MOOC Artist Website-Blog micro-X-prize of €100. for the MOOC Classmate who creates the site with the most urgency!

Define Urgency:

  1. New Artist Website or Improvement to Existing Artist Website
  2. Compelling presentation of your work
  3. Engaging presentation of your ideas
  4. Inspired graphic presence
  5. Meaningful interaction with an audience
  6. Maintained by the artist-scholar themself

Artist Website Challenge: screencap of Amy O'Neil's artist's website home page
Pretty much, this means to document your work, express your ideas, and have interaction with colleagues and a public.

You don’t have to do your Artist Website from the ground up yourself. You certainly can! But you’re also free to get help, free or paid, from friends, designers, or anyone else. The maintained by you requirement is simply that when someone does an Artist Website for you, it inevitably becomes outdated. This should be a site that you are involved with, can interact with your public at, and can easily document projects and new activities on.

I’m working on a trio of jurors now and will announce them during the challenge.

But How?

While I don’t claim to be any sort of expert, I do have some experience with websites and blogs and I’m available to help in any way I can, creative, technical, or otherwise, for anyone who’d like help.

Even if you have no Artist Website today, or if you aren’t so proud of the one you do have, having a great site in a month is a whole lot easier than you might think. I know you can talk articulately about your work, just look at the great ideas you’ve been expressing in our MOOC for the last month! And I’m sure you can find some pix or vids somewhere in your studio or dusty archive.

One empowering thing to know is that back in the early days of Web 1.0 the Form & Content of a page were in the same document. They got separated in Web 2.0, which is great for us. It means you can pour your words, images, sounds, videos in, and with a click take advantage of the form-atting that some talented designer poured many hours into. On platforms like WordPress and tumblr, that formatting is called a “Theme,” and there are tons of great free themes as well as some beautiful “premium” themes. You can make a great site, by yourself, without ever looking at a line of code.

A truly compelling Artist Website is within your reach!


Artist Website Challenge: sample screencap of artist's website
If you choose to enter this X-Prize Challenge, you’d probably like to win it. But whatever you do, don’t think of your classmates as competition. Think of them as collaborators. The more you help each other, give feedback, comment on each other’s work, the better everyone’s sites will be. One person will win the €100 prize, but everyone can win the even greater prize of creating a truly vibrant site that presents your work in powerful ways to an engaged public.


  1. Submit your application (below) this week, preferably today!
  2. Get Started / Ask for Help or Advice
  3. I’ll send out updated participant lists
  4. Interact with your peers
  5. Finish by Sunday night, 15 December
  6. Website-blog URLs submitted to jurors on Monday, 16 December
  7. Prize awarded in time to spend it on the holidays

Show Me the Money

If anyone out there would like to pitch in a few euros (or dollars, pesos, yen, or any other currency) to make the prize a little bigger, I welcome your joining in!


Artist Website Challenge: sample screencap of artist's website
To join in this X-Prize Challenge, simply fill out the form below. If you’d like to receive updates on the event but not enter your site, you can also fill out the form and simply check the appropriate box.

Sorry the “a few words about” boxes aren’t bigger. MailChimp limits them to 256 characters.

Enter the MOOC Artist Website Challenge!

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Artist Website Challenge: sample screencap of artist's website

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