Æther Feature — European Steampunk Convention 2012: After Action Report

Every Thursday, the Archives will feature artists, musicians, and makers of all variety, entered for your approval here in the Archives. With so many talented individuals to choose from, we know it is a challenge to feature every clever creative worthy of note, but perhaps we might endeavour to introduce to you a new name in our community of steam and cog, or perhaps remind you of one artisan’s successful efforts to bring the past that never was to the here and now.

This week’s Æther Feature for October 25, 2012, submitted for your pleasure:


Last month, Æther Feature told you about the ESC 2012 — a one-of-a-kind steampunk convention held across Europe. The promise “a party like it’s 1899” where steampunks connected through Skype,  Google Hangout, Twitter, and other social networks. Now, one of the ESC’s creative minds, Marcus R. Gilman of the Daily Steampunk blog, returns to the Æther Feature with his account of this amazing event… 

We will take photos and make videos and have a compilation at one point to share with everybody involved and whoever is interested. Most important of all: We hope this is only the first and there will be many more to come!

One year in the making, 48 hours of celebrating. The European Steampunk Convention 2012 has come and gone and what an event it was.

My personal experience is a bit focused on Vienna and Spain. I was in Vienna when it happened and coordinated most of the online-activities and our most active online-participants were from Spain and Portugal. Most of the twittering happened in Spanish (with guest posts from Mexico!) and the life-streams that did not come from Vienna were from Barcelona and Porto.

But it would be down right false to say there was little going on elsewhere. It just so happened that Vienna, Porto and Barcelona had the best equipment for online-communication but now (one week after the first European Steampunk Convention), there is still material coming in.

We have evidence of activity from Portugal, Spain, France, Luxembourg, Germany, the Czech Republic, Slovenia, Hungary, Great Britain, Sweden and Croatia.

More and more galleries are being posted on the official Facebook Page and videos keep popping up on Youtube.

The event was a success. The Madrid crowd said on October 1st, quote: “We want more”

And this is exactly what is going to happen. The European Steampunk Convention 2012 was the first. Plans for 2013 are already being made.

Mexico was not the only non-European place chiming in. I had the pleasure of having a, slightly glitched, video-conference with the Airship Ambassador Kevin Steil himself.

This was, unfortunately, not the only glitch. The Google Hangout proved unreliable and several events did not have a stable internet-connection at all, so all we got life from them was via phone-sent tweets (e.g. Luxembourg).

So, for the next event, we have to improve our information-infrastructure to make sure everybody can join the online-conversation but apart from that, everything went smoothly. My only personal regret is that I was not in the place where I could see Victor Sierra perform. But that is all. The European Steampunk Convention was a success and it was only the first. The Steampunks of Europe have shown they can party together and they will do so again.

I also invite everybody to check out these videos and photos:

The complete event in Porto (Part 1) — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TD1BYMfYmow

From Hungary — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HKQWw8QsuAg

Barcelona — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JPhnSOejR2E

Vienna — http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azQIABw-Mbk


So, a big “Thank You” and an even bigger hug to all the organizers who made this pan-european event possible and great thanks to everybody who came along to party! You made this a wekend to remember and I hope to see you all in 2013!

 faithfully presented by Marcus R. Gilman of the Daily Steampunk blog. 


Do you have a steampunk musician, artist, short film, designer, or maker that you wish to see in our Ministry Æther Feature? Contact our journalists at tee (at) teemorris (dot) com and pip (at) pjballantine (dot) com, and they will labour to feature you here. If selected, the artist-in-question will be notified. Thank you for your continuing interest in the Ministry of Peculiar Occurrences.


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