Alchemists of the Future

In 2021, the Ars Electronica Futurelab celebrated its 25th anniversary. Under the heading Alchemists of the Future, the Open Futurelab therefor presented a look back at the lab’s challenges and successes, but most importantly its latest ideas and glimpes into the future.

With the exhibition Alchemists of the Future – The Journey, a specially developed web experience, an extraordinary video series, and a new book, the lab presented a visionary review and preview at the boundary between art, technology, and society. The highlight of the celebration was the Futurelab Day on September 9th, inviting the public to a wide range of discussions, workshops and one-of-a-kind artistic performances.

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Exhibition

To commemorate the anniversary, the Ars Electronica Futurelab created a special exhibition at the Ars Electronica Center in Linz: Alchemists of the Future – The Journey. It aimed to show the many-faceted work and virtuosity of the lab as well as its very latest prototypes of the future. The Alchemists of the Future Web Experience merged virtual and real spaces, with a telepresence robot as an avatar for web users in the exhibition’s Hybrid Space.

Video Series

In a total of nine episodes, artists and researchers from the Ars Electronica Futurelab reappraised its 25-year history. Deep Virtual, a specially developed virtual production system for Deep Space 8K, serves as an impressive backdrop for the protagonists while creating space for new ideas.
In Directors Talk — 25 years Ars Electronica Futurelab and beyond Co-Directors Horst Hörtner, Hideaki Ogawa and Roland Haring provide a glimpse into the essence of the Ars Electronica Futurelab.
In the video tour Inside Futurelab: Alchemists of the Future — Online Journey lab director Hideaki Ogawa takes you on a trip through the hybrid exhibition Alchemists of the Future.

When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration
When you start the video, you agree that data is transferred to Youtube.
Data Protection Declaration

Publication

Alchemists of the Future is the first book ever written specifically about the Ars Electronica Futurelab. Numerous conversations with the transdisciplinary team of Futurelab Members and Futurelab Alumni as well as an international network of mentors, partners and clients from academia, industry and art served as a starting point. Based on this, author Andreas J. Hirsch presents insights into the mindset and methods behind the ability of the Futurelab to act as creative catalysts of future innovation. Read more about the book in an interview with Andreas J. Hirsch on the Ars Electronica Blog: Alchemists of the Future – The Book

Free Download of the Alchemists of the Future book

Alchemists of the Future — The Book, Photos: Birgit Cakir

Futurelab Day

On its anniversary on September 9, 2021, the Ars Electronica Futurelab celebrated the lab’s visionaries with talks and discussions, guided tours and performances. Transcending geographical, cultural, economic and disciplinary boundaries, the Lab offered a wide-ranging discourse with Morning Inspirations. Later, the lab team invited participants to spend some time with future perspectives and innovation in Afternoon Experiences: from personal conversations and encounters to guided journeys to interactive experiences in the hybrid exhibition Alchemists of the Future. A highlight of the extensive program was the Night Performances in Deep Space 8K.

Futurelab Day — Night Performances, Photo: Birgit Cakir
Futurelab Day — Morning Inspirations, Photo: Birgit Cakir

Credits

Ars Electronica Futurelab: Flavia Andessner, Friedrich Bachinger, Florian Berger, Patrick Berger, Alexandre Bizri, Kerstin Blätterbinder, Birgit Cakir, Arno Deutschbauer, Manuel Dobusch, Samuel Jakob Eckl, Marianne Eisl, Stephan Feichter, Peter Freudling, Matthew Gardiner, Bernadette Geißler, Barbara Habringer, Roland Haring, Denise Hirtenfelder, Horst Hörtner, Peter Holzkorn, Susanne Kiesenhofer, Kyoko Kunoh, Anna Kuthan, Elisabeth Luger, Johannes Lugstein, Maria Mayr, Stefan Mittlböck-Jungwirth-Fohringer, Otto Naderer, Nicolas Naveau, Ali Nikrang, Anna Oelsch, Hideaki Ogawa, Maria Pfeifer, Johannes Pöll, Daniel Rammer, Erwin Reitböck, Raphael Schaumburg-Lippe, Simon Schmid, Yoko Shimizu, Georgios Tsampounaris, Julian Zauner