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About the origin of the Stiftung gGmbH

The Stiftung gGmbH has developed over several levels to its current form as a non-commercial GmbH.

Formation of the project Kulturraum Raststätte following the initiative of a group of artists and persons engaged in the cultural sector in a shop in Aachens center. Initially used as a space for exhibitions and events, the "Raststätte" quickly becomes a renowned benchmark for the cultural scene of Aachen. With the founding of the free internet café Planet WipeOut in one of its rooms art projects arise, in which the internet plays an increasing role.

Formation of the Kulturserver as an independent project. becomes an online platform for may artists and cultural institutions around Aachen. Significantly involved is the development of the database CultureBase for decentralised management of cultural data. On basis of this online database, a growing number of cultural institutions, cities and parishes administer their own cultural informations on the internet. The system rapidly spreads into other regions of Northrhine-Westphalia and the Euregio Maas-Rhein.

Parallel to the developments in Aachen start of the project with the formation of the Kulturserver Lower Saxony by the Ponton European Media Art Lab, Hannover.

Formation of the Förderverein Kunst und Internet e.V. to set a judicial frame for the projects by the Kulturraum Raststätte and The memebers are artists, designers, information scientists and humanists. Today, the association can look back on a considerable amount of events, initiatives and projects. Up until today, CultureBase is managed and enhanced in a close collaboration between the Förderverein and the Stiftung gGmbH.

Meeting of the operators of the projects (Ponton Lab, Hannover) and CultureBase (Förderverein Kunst und Internet e.V., Aachen) on the occasion of the announcement of the federal state of Northrhine-Westphalia for an official cultural internet portal.

Formation of the Stiftung gGmbH by Benjamin Heidersberger ( and Wolfgang Knauff ( to combine the project contents of and CultureBase to a joint coherent system. From this time on, the project Kulturserver exists in its current form.

Through the years, the Stiftung gGmbH has helped a large amount of artists, persons engaged in the cultural field, institutions and associations to a web presence. The basic idea has been to enable the artist to promote himself and his work in the internet, as well as support organisations to represent themselves via their members and to facilitate their workflow. An essential point is to help them help themselves with the result to create quality networks without limiting the diversity of the cultural world.

Initially, besides single institutions and artists mainly regional and federal cultural managers were involved, but by and by more genre oriented portals joined the project. Additionally, already existing networks took the opportunity to join with their own work.

From the marketing portals of different theatre associations , , and over the national dance portall and the to the VG Bild-Kunst, which uses the databases of Kulturserver for the presentation of their artists on their homepage , all together build a network, that provides cultural data nationwide focussing on the exchange of information of the network partners. At this time, the Kulturserver project is one of the largest platforms for art and culture in Germany. All data coalesce on the site .

About 40.000 persons and 35.000 entries of institutions, groups and projects make up the basis for a continuosly growing data pool. Thanks to the commitment of all partners the moderated self-entry-system offers a representative overview about the diverse activities of different cultural genres, which is always up to date. More than 12 million visitors yearly, who visit about 48 million pages of all sites belonging to the network illustrate the success of this approach.

The common basis of the partner network is the cultural database CultureBase