Futurelab Night Performances 2023

Just as in previous years, the Futurelab Night Performances – part of Open Futurelab – were one of the highlights of the Ars Electronica Festival 2023. This “Artistic Futures Report”, delivered live on Saturday evening in the Deep Space 8K, was a great opportunity to experience the Futurelab’s multifaceted work in concentrated form and up close. For the first time, two slots were offered to accomodate as many visitors as possible – the interest was stunning.

The night began with Faust VR that was developed for the Salzburg Festival, bringing the work of theater magician Max Reinhardt to new life: Using VR glasses, visitors to the Felsenreitschule experience key moments of Reinhardt’s “Faust” productions in a elaborate digital recreation of the famous stage set of “Fauststadt” from 1933 and 1937/38. The Futurelab internal projects Deep Sync and Bridge 2040 followed, giving insight into the different ideas and experiments at the lab. The innovative Deep Sync application sonifies and visualizes each person’s heartbeat, while the Bridge 2040 card game brings generations together to find inspiration for the future. The artists Miller Puckette (US), Anne Wichmann (DE/US) and Dan Wilcox (US) then presented their unique musical takes on the latest developments in Oribotic Instruments.

The Data Art & Science Project showed the great diversity with which artists encounter the field of data art. Quadrature (DE) presented “one who suffers”, an audiovisual project in fast-paced 3D around health expenditure and perceived personal health based on income. Akiko Nakayama (JP) realized “Issun”, an almost meditative live painting based on data about optimism and pessimism. With “MOTHER FLUCTUATION”, Akira Wakita (JP) explored the rise and fall of temperatures, sea levels, markets, and civilization together with Kairi Haruna (JP). Further investigations came from the Futurelab itself: Key Researcher and Artist Peter Holzkorn (AT) made harmful nanoparticles from traffic visible as swarms of particle structures in “23 nm”. Futurelab Senior Researcher and Artist Arno Deutschbauer (AT) tackled the loss of biodiversity in “Harmony Lost”: Birdcall recordings of the endangered whinchat were paired with data on the decline in bird populations to create an immersive audiovisual experience.

The Futurelab Night Performances 2023 were concluded by S ECTI VE – Futurelab artist Arno Deutschbauer (AT) and Micha Elias Pichlkastner (AT/CA) – and the already legendary noise performance 11°22’4″142°35’5″ by Futurelab members Peter Holzkorn (AT) and Johannes Pöll (AT) as well as our esteemed former colleague, artist Stefan Mittlböck-Jungwirth-Fohringer (AT).

Further articles to the Night Performances of the Open Futurelab 2023 can be found on the Ars Electronica Blog: