“Move over, Cannes, Minneapolis might just be home to the greatest film festival ever.” —Huffington Post
Minneapolis, June 2, 2015—Tickets to the 2015 Internet Cat Video Festival are on sale today, June 2. This year’s event, held on August 12 at CHS Field, will be hosted by radio personality Barb Abney of Go 96.3 radio station. “I am elated to be hosting the Internet Cat Video Festival! I can finally justify all those hours of “studying online” during working hours!” says Abney, voted the Best Radio Personality in the City Pages Best Of: Reader’s Choice poll.
The fourth installment of the Internet Cat Video Festival features a new selection of videos curated by Will Braden, the creator of the Henri Le Chat Noir videos and recipient of the festival’s first Golden Kitty (People’s Choice) Award. Film critic Roger Ebert called Henri 2, Paw De Deux “The best internet cat video ever made” and The Huffington Post, in reviewing Henri 3, Le Vet, called Henri “almost like a feline Serge Gainsbourg, just without the singing, or the alcoholism, or the public scandal. Or maybe he’s not like that at all. Maybe Henri, is, as he so eloquently states in his latest film, his ‘own cat.’”
Internet Cat Video Festival
Wednesday, August 12, 2015
Gates open to Cat-themed activities at 6:30 pm, screening 8:30 – 10 pm
360 Broadway, St. Paul, MN
Tickets to the Internet Cat Video Festival go on sale June 2. Meow!
$10 ($8 Walker members); $6 ages 6–12; free for ages 5 and under with paid adult. Tickets available at walkerart.org/tickets or by calling 612.375.7600.
Seats in the stands and on the field are first-come-first-served.
Abney is a radio host with more than 20 years of experience. She has been a fan of cats since birth! She was raised on a farm in rural Ohio where she was surrounded by farm cats. Over the years, the one thing that always remained part of her life was cats. Her current brood consists of 9 year-old Gary and three year-old Zod. Abney is from the Cincinnati, Ohio area originally, but has lived in Minneapolis since 2006 when she took a job with Minnesota Public Radio’s alternative station, 89.3 The Current. In February, Abney took the 8 am–12 noon show on air at Go 96.3
A Brief History of the Internet Cat Video Festival
In August 2012, the Walker Art Center planned a small experiment as part of its outdoor summer programming on Open Field, the greenspace adjacent to the museum. What if there was an evening dedicated to the Internet phenomenon of cat videos? Would anyone come to watch videos that they could easily view by few clicks at home or work? How would this solo hobby translate to a public setting?
Word of the event quickly spread internationally via social media and the press, including coverage as varied as the New York Times, the BBC, Japanese television, Australian talk shows, Brazilian newspapers, CNN, NPR, The Wall Street Journal, Cat Fancy, Slate, Time, CHEEZburger, and many more. The result was some 10,000 people (and a few celebricats) gathered on the hillside at the Walker, enjoying the first Internet Cat Video Festival—together. Subsequent installments—at the Minnesota State Fair Grand Stand (with Grumpy Cat and Lil Bub, among other special guests) and back at Walker’s Open Field last year—attracted similar crowds, and the overwhelming success of the event has led to international tours of the program.
Internet Cat Video Festival Select Media:
“On Thursday evening the Walker Art Center, one of the nation’s most prominent institutions of contemporary art, hosted the inaugural Internet Cat Video Film Festival here. An estimated 10,000 people turned out for an event that was, from its inception to its closing credits, an online meme made flesh (and fur).” —The New York Times
“Organized by the world-renowned Walker Art Center, the festival is proof positive that you don’t need to sit in front of a computer all by yourself to enjoy a good Internet meme.” —Today.com
“Intended only as an experiment at first, the festival became a stellar example of togetherness in the Internet age, a place where people fond of viewing cat videos, one of the most universally popular online time-wasters, could gather IRL (in real life) for communal enjoyment of the same thing on a giant screen.” —Star Tribune
“We know what you’re thinking: Why am I not in Minneapolis right now at the first Internet Cat Video Film Festival watching the best clips of cats chasing laser pointers, purring and ignoring the camera?” —Mashable
“Proof that cats really do rule everything around us” —Timeout New York
The festival, for all its admitted silliness, does spring from an intriguing conceptual premise: Essentially, organizers wondered, can a phenomenon that is so manifestly “of the Internet” translate into “real life”? And can a genre that is consumed almost entirely by individuals, on their personal, intimate screens, be appreciated in a mass setting? Given the success of the festival over its three-year run — it’s now so popular that it tours outside Minneapolis and has spawned copycats (heh) all over the country — the answers to both
questions are, apparently, yes.’ —_The Washington Post
Note: Event date was corrected in this release since its original posting.