Demoscene accepted as UNESCO cultural heritage in The Netherlands

Today the demoscene was accepted as Dutch national intangible cultural heritage.


We very happy about the success of the Dutch demoscene to be accepted as a living national cultural heritage!

The Dutch inscription is continuing the success story of the demoscene as first digital culture accepted by the UNESCO. Previously the demoscene became cultural heritage in Finland, Germany and Poland.

Check out the official entry at the inventory ( and the safeguarding plan, which was the core of the application (

Our congrats go to the whole Dutch community and specifically to ‘RamonB5^dSr’ aka Ramon de Bruijn, ‘@zeno4ever’ aka Dave Borghuis and ‘havoc’ aka Peter van Rijn, who were mainly responsible for submitting the application.

The Dutch inscription will be a big push for other pending applications like in Switzerland. And also it’s making a joint international application more likely.

Stay tuned…

Unesco status helps aquiring budget for reach out

The Finnish Museum of Games promotes the continuity of the demoscene in Finland

The Finnish Heritage Agency has awarded the Finnish Museum of Games a grant to promote the continuity of the demoscene across generations. The New Faces of the Demoscene project, starting in 2023, will bring together demoscene activists and young people to create a cross-generational dialogue. Through the project, young people from the Pirkanmaa region will be guided to learn about the past and present of the demoscene, and to produce their own demos for the Graffathon event.

The Finnish Museum of Games promotes the continuity of the Finnish demoscene together with demoscene activists. The museum is also working with the international Art of Coding campaign to add the international demoscene to UNESCO’s list of intangible cultural heritage. The New Faces of the Demoscene project is implemented in cooperation with MuseoX, Graffathon and the City of Tampere youth services.

Demoscene in Poland gets accepted as national immaterial cultural heritage

We are super-stoked about the success of the Polish demoscene to be accepted as a living national cultural heritage!
To inform you quickly let us quote from the success text of the committee of Polish demosceners (Komitet Społeczny Kronika Polskiej Demosceny / KSKPD) behind the application:

“Polish demoscene is officially Polish cultural heritage.”

We are proud to successfully participate in the international initiative Art of Coding, which aims to recognize demoscene creation as a craft and art, whose development is a part of modern human history. Poland joins the successes of Finland and Germany, and our experience opens doors for other countries, whose demoscene communities are also working on their proposals. The goal of this cooperation is to include the world demoscene on the UNESCO list of Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity – and it will be the first-ever digital culture on this list.” Andzrej Lichnerowicz and others at

We are extremely happy that Poland, right after Finland and Germany, recognized the digital culture of the demoscene as an immaterial cultural heritage. It is a huge milestone, as it confirms on an institutional level that the demoscene is a major influence on digital culture east and west, north and south, crossing all borders and boundaries. We are super grateful for the success of the Polish scene and the community behind Kronika Polskiej Demosceny, which pushed the successful application with great passion and energy. Ogromne gratulacje!”
Tobias Kopka – Co-Founder Art of Coding”

Thank you to all supporters involved in making it happen, first and foremost Unjello from Aberration Creations and also Luisa from Poo-Brain for initial energy rushes, and please see the main article from the Polish Demosceners at for full names-list and as well our Supporters-Section at Art of Coding.

For full details and context please check out:

Thank you again, we are super excited, what a happy end of the year!

Happy New 2021

“Happy New 2021” from all of us and thank you for supporting us in 2020! As challenging 2020 and full of losses may have been for all of us, for Art of Coding it was a good year, so we want to thank you for this!

Thank you to everybody who made the success of the Finnish Application possible, helped the German Application taking a major step to success, and who is supporting the groups in Poland, France, Hungary, Switzerland, Denmark, the Netherlands and more places gearing up next applications!

Thank you for your support in 2020, happy new year 2021 to come! (Picture: Anna-Carolin Weber / Tobias Kopka)

In the second half of the year we turned a little more inward, as the pandemic took more time and mental space – and also impacted our work lives severely in some of our cases – like for probably many of you, too.

Though even with all the struggles 2020 had to bring we are super happy that on all ends initiatives were pushed forward, articles were published and talks were given by friends of the demoscene. And we know already there is more to come in 2021!
(See our Twitter, or check out our Press Area for updates in next weeks and more details)

So what’s coming up next in 2021?

In January join us for a Discord-gathering of supporters (edit: Date is Tuesday, the 19th 2020 at 8pm CET in the Discord), in February we aim to check in with all teams actively interested in pushing applications, and in March (*DRUMROLL*) we expect to hear back from UNESCO in Germany!

All of this will lead to Revision Online happening in April. Plans are to convene digitally at Revision, to replenish energy, gather ideas and bring together supporters for updating each other on the chances and challenges for the months to come.

Updates too scarce?

No problem, if you are feeling you would like to be more involved make sure you follow our Twitter and join our Discord (, as these are the two channels where we share updates aside of the main milestones which generate website news. And you can always poke us directly on Twitter or Discord in case you are curious or wondering how to move on with something.

It’s not about us, but the scene as a special place!

So thank you again, sceners, cultural folks, digital and nondigital people, without your support we wouldn’t have made it this far! Now onto the next year, for probably a few more to come! Thank you for your continued support!
Tobias and Andreas on behalf of the Art of Coding Team and Initiative

Demoscene nominated as intangible UNESCO cultural heritage in Germany

Cologne, 21. 04. 2020 – The Cologne-based association Digitale Kultur e.V. has made it. For the first time, the demoscene as a digital cultural form has been nominated by the UNESCO in NRW for the UNESCO lists of intangible cultural heritage in Germany. Further hurdles still have to be overcome, the final confirmation at the federal level is due at the beginning of 2021.

> Please find German version of article below

As the Ministry of Culture and Science in North Rhine-Westphalia announced at the end of last week , the demoscene was nominated for inclusion in the national German UNESCO cultural heritage register. Together with three other cultures, the jury selected the demoscene as worthy of recognition from a total of 18 applications.

After the landmark decision in Finland last week, in which the demoscene was recognized as a Finnish national UNESCO cultural heritage, the decision in Germany is another success for the Art of Coding campaign, under whose umbrella similar applications are currently being prepared in other countries.

What is the demoscene?

Since the beginning of the home computer era in the early 1980s, the demoscene has been a playground for border crossers and creative explorers of the digital revolution. It is especially dedicated to the production of software-generated music videos, which are completely generated in real time by self-created programs. Beginning in the 80s, with so-called intro-videos before cracked games, the art and culture of the scene has constantly evolved, and since the 90s it has been living out its skills in independent audiovisual real-time animations to bend the rules of hardware and software. On one hand, the demoscene is a global phenomenon and has influenced many other digital contexts, on the other hand, there has always a been a strong element of a regular physical culture at the scene’s meetings. For decades the demoparties function as regular gatherings and have formed a place for exchange, living out and further development of one’s own culture.

Demosceners celebrating at Revision and Evoke.

Historical decision as a belated Easter gift

Especially after Revision – world’s largest gathering of demosceners, traditionally taking place over Easter – had to be moved to the internet as no physical demoscene-party was allowed, the nomination of the demoscene for the nationwide list is a great belated Easter present.

The fact that the German jury experts were aware of the historical significance of their decision is suggested by the notification of nomination: “As the ‘demoscene’ in North Rhine-Westphalia is the first cultural form from the field of digital culture to be proposed for inclusion in the nationwide directory, the state jury for the Intangible Cultural Heritage in North Rhine-Westphalia discussed the application intensively.”

Digital cultural heritage

Tobias Kopka, from the Cologne-based applicant Digitale Kultur e.V., responsible for the application in Germany and the community work of the overarching Art of Coding initiative, is enthusiastic: “The demoscene is the first time a digital culture has been nominated for the nationwide list of intangible UNESCO cultural heritage. For decades, the demoscene has been a technical-creative cultural community that transcends all borders – and sees itself as transnational in the best sense of the word. And the application not only drives the discussion about the demoscene, but also in a broader sense about contemporary inclusion of all digital cultural forms into the canon of cultural preservation and promotion.

Andreas Lange from EFGAMP e.V., who is responsible for the coordination of the international applications at Art of Coding, is particularly pleased with the jury’s understanding in their notification that ‘in addition to technical excellence, a strongly internationally oriented sense of community is one of the scene’s identification factors’. “Because the demoscene has been international as a digital culture from the very beginning, any national recognition is an important milestone, as it increases the chances of having the demoscene recognized internationally. Since the demoscene has developed substantially in Europe, this is also an opportunity to name a decidedly European cultural practice which, as digital, is inseparably linked to current and future cultural and social conditions.”

Community feeling and collective effort

Tobias Kopka: “The point is to make it clear that digital culture can function in a decentralized, self-organized, anonymous and competitive way – and still create a strong sense of belonging and a community with special knowledge, stories and traditions. After 30 years that could be called digital customs, but at the same time it is still constantly evolving. Many of the classical definitions of culture reach their limits here. And this community experience is not only expressed in the support of many demogroups, demoparties and individuals of the scene – the positive feedback we receive fortunately goes far beyond that of the demoscene. This is great and we are happy about every support, because the initiative is just starting!”

It will remain tense at least until the beginning of 2021, as two further hurdles still have to be overcome – confirmation by the Conference of Ministers of Education and Cultural Affairs and examination by an independent commission of experts at federal level. And if all this has worked out, then the start of a transnational application is on the agenda, which all countries that have included the demoscene in their national cultural heritage can then join.

The initiators Kopka and Lange are optimistic: “The time is right for the demoscene to become included in the living UNESCO cultural heritage register in Germany as first digital cultural practice ever”.

Köln, 21. 04. 2020 – Der Kölner Verein Digitale Kultur e.V. hat es geschafft. Erstmalig wird mit der Demoszene von der UNESCO in NRW eine digitale Kulturform für die Listen des lebendigen UNESCO Kulturerbes in Deutschland nominiert. Weitere Hürden sind noch zu nehmen, die finale Bestätigung auf Bundesebene steht Anfang 2021 an.

Wie das Ministerium für Kultur und Wissenschaft in Nordrhein-Westfalen Ende letzter Woche bekannt gab, wurde die Demozene für die Aufnahme in das nationale Deutsche UNESCO Kulturerbeverzeichnis nominiert. Zusammen mit drei anderen Kulturen wählte die Jury aus insgesamt 18 Anträgen die Demoszene als anerkennungswürdig aus.

Nach der wegweisenden Entscheidung in Finnland von letzter Woche, in der die Demoszene als nationales Finnisches UNESCO Kulturerbe anerkannt wurde, ist die Entscheidung in Deutschland ein weiterer Erfolg für die Art of Coding Kampagne, unter deren Schirm derzeit auch in anderen Ländern ähnliche Anträge vorbereitet werden.

Was ist die Demoszene?

Seit Beginn der Heimcomputer-Ära in den frühen 1980ern ist die Demoszene Spielort für Grenzgänger und Kreativ-Explorer der digitalen Revolution. Sie hat sich insbesondere der Produktion von softwaregenerierten Musikvideos verschrieben, die in Echtzeit vollständig durch selbstgeschriebene Programme generiert werden. Beginnend in den 80ern, mit sogenannten Intro-Vorspännen vor geknackten Spielen, hat sich die Kunst und Kultur der Szene beständig weiterentwickelt, um seit den 90ern in eigenständigen audiovisuellen Echtzeit-Animationen ihr Können abseits vorgegebener Regeln von Hard- und Software auszuleben. Einerseits ist die Demoszene ein globales Phänomen, das viele andere digitale Kontexte mit beeinflußt hat, andererseits aber immer auch eine regelmäßig ganz physische Kultur auf den Treffen der Szene. Denn seit Jahrzehnten bilden die Demopartys als regelmässige Zusammenkünfte einen Ort zum Austausch, Ausleben und Fortentwicklung der eigenen Kultur.

Historische Entscheidung als verspätetes Ostergeschenk

Gerade nachdem die Revision, die traditionell an Ostern stattfindende, weltgrößte Zusammenkunft von Demoszenern, ins Internet verlegt werden musste, ist die Nominierung der Demoszene für die bundesweite Liste ein großartiges verspätetes Ostergeschenk.

Dass sich sich die deutschen Jury-Experten der historischen Tragweite ihrer Entscheidung bewusst gewesen sind, legt der Nominierungsbescheid nahe: „Da mit der ‘Demoszene’ in Nordrhein-Westfalen erstmalig eine Kulturform aus dem Bereich der digitalen Kultur für die Aufnahme in das Bundesweite Verzeichnis vorgeschlagen wurde, hat die Landesjury für das Immaterielle Kulturerbe in Nordrhein-Westfalen die Bewerbung intensiv diskutiert.”

Digitales Kulturerbe

Tobias Kopka, vom Kölner Antragsteller Digitale Kultur e.V., verantwortlich für den Antrag in Deutschland, sowie die Community-Arbeit der übergreifenden Art of Coding Initiative, ist begeistert: „Mit der Demoszene wird erstmalig eine digitale Kultur für das bundesweite Verzeichnis des immateriellen UNESCO Kulturerbe nominiert. Die Demoszene setzt sich als technisch-kreative Kulturgemeinschaft seit Dekaden über jedwede Grenzen hinweg und versteht sich im besten Sinne als transnational. Der gemeinsame Antrag treibt die Diskussion um einen zeitgemäßen Einbezug aller digitalen Kulturformen in den selbstverständlichen Kanon der Kulturbewahrung und -förderung voran.”

Über das Verständnis der Jury im Nominierungsbescheid, dass ‘neben der technischen Exzellenz ein stark international ausgerichtetes Gemeinschaftsgefühl zu den Identifikationsfaktoren der Szene gehört’, freut sich besonders Andreas Lange von EFGAMP e.V., der für die Koordination der internationalen Anträge bei Art of Coding verantwortlich ist. “Weil die Demoszene von Anfang an als digitale Kultur international war, ist jede nationale Anerkennung ein wichtiger Meilenstein, da so die Chancen steigen, die Demoszene auch international anerkennen zu lassen. Da sich die Demoszene wesentlich in Europa ausgeprägt hat, ist dies auch eine Gelegenheit, eine dezidiert Europäische Kulturpraxis zu benennen, die als digitale untrennbar mit den heutigen und zukünftigen kulturellen und gesellschaftlichen Gegebenheiten verknüpft ist.”

Gemeinschaftsgefühl und kollektive Anstrengung

Tobias Kopka: “Es geht darum, deutlich zu machen, dass digitale Kultur dezentral, selbst-organisiert, anonym und wettbewerbsorientiert sein kann, und dennoch ein starkes Zusammenhörigkeitsgefühl und eine Community mit besonderem Wissen, Geschichten und Traditionen entstehen kann, die man als digitales Brauchtum bezeichnen könnte, sich gleichzeitig aber permanent weiterentwickelt. Viele der klassischen Kulturbegriffe kommen hier an ihre Grenzen. Und diese Gemeinschaftserfahrung drückt sich nicht nur in der Unterstützung vieler Demogruppen, Demopartys und Einzelpersonen der Szene aus – die positiven Rückmeldungen, die wir erhalten, gehen erfreulicherweise weit über die der Demoszene hinaus. Das ist klasse und wir freuen uns über jede Unterstütung, denn es geht ja gerade erst los!”

Spannend bleibt es mindestens bis Anfang 2021, da noch zwei weitere Hürden genommen werden müssen – die Bestätigung durch die Kultusministerkonferenz und die Prüfung durch eine unabhängige Expertenkommission auf Bundesebene. Und hat all das geklappt, dann steht der Beginn eines transnationalen Antrages auf dem Plan, dem sich dann alle Länder anschließen können, die die Demoszene in ihr nationales Kulturerbe aufgenommen haben.

Die Initiatoren Kopka und Lange zeigen sich optimistisch: „Die Zeit ist reif, dass mit der Demoszene die erste digitale Kulturform ins lebendige UNESCO Kulturerbe in Deutschland aufgenommen wird“.


Source featured image : Liveshader Competition at Evoke, combattants in picture Flopine and Nusan (Cologne, 2019), Photo: Darya Gulyamova,

For questions or support contact the Art of Coding initiative here.

Application text to UNESCO in Germany: PDF here.
Digitale Kultur e.V.:

See all partners & supporters (constantly growing, get in touch!): here.

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Application in Germany submitted

We more than glad to announce, that the submission in Germany has been finalized by Digitale Kultur e.V. and has been submitted to UNESCO in the Bundesland North Rhine-Westphalia (NRW) few days ago on the 30th of October.

The submission has been written in an collaborative community effort led by Tobias Kopka supported by Andre Kudra, Stephan Maienhöfer, Gleb Albert, Christian Brandt, Andreas Lange and many more who gave their hands at Digitale Kultur und Tastatur und Maus e.V.
Included in the submission is photo image material by Darya Gulyamova, Gleb Albert and Tobias Kopka from Revision, Evoke, also including historical scene materials.
Also included in the submission is a video edit Tobias did in 2011, which represents demos from 1991-2011, with a range of different impressions of the diversity of aesthetics of demos.

We intend to share the submission (in German language) for orientation for applicants in other countries soon.

While we are continuing to extend the outreach into the scene in general and other countries specifically the application in Germany will be decided by an independent expert committee until early next year and hopefully nominated by NRW for the national listing in Germany.

Thank you all who supported us so far – stay tuned!

Milestone for the Finnish AoC application in Tampere at Collaborative Game Histories seminar

The Collaborative Game Histories seminar, which was organized by the Finnish Museum of Games together with the Centre of Excellence in Game Culture Studies and the University of Turku hosted a panel and a workshop in regards of the Finnish Art of Coding application last week. In the workshop the Wiki entry, which is an essential part of the Finnish application procedure, was further elaborated by the present sceners.

Also an encouraging video was provided by Leena Marsio from the Finnish Heritage Agency, which is responsible for managing the ICH applications in Finland.

The application will be submitted officially in Finland between Nov. 4th and Dec 5th, 2019.

Progress in Germany

The community discussion at evoke ( was very fruitful and helped explaining the initiative and shaping the application. Together with the AoC presentation at Gamescom Congress in Cologne ( it also increased the awarnes of the broader public in Germany about AoC. Here are some examples of the press coverage of the recent days: [Min 22:14]