The Highlights of the 2022 Ars Electronica

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Welcome to Planet B
A different life is possible — but how?

(29.8.2022) Some people see good climate policy as bad economic policy; others see good economic policy as bad social policy; still others see good social policy as bad climate policy. So far, so bad. But how can we reach a consensus on strategies when justified points of view are constantly at odds with each other? What priorities can be set at a time when no one knows which crisis is the more serious?
Let’s stop spinning in circles and move forward for once. Ars Electronica 2022 invites you to take part in a thought experiment: Assuming we’d already mastered the crises of our time and had found our way to a society characterized by economic, ecological and social sustainability — what would our lives look like then? And what would the path we took to get there look like? What decisions would we have made and how would we have arrived at those decisions? How would we have changed our leisure activities, how would our mobility have developed, how would work have been reinterpreted? And which technologies and business models would have been the real “game changers” in the end?

All of these questions will be explored by some 1,000 artists, researchers, developers, entrepreneurs, activists and students from all over the world at this year’s Ars Electronica, which will take place from September 7 to 11 at eleven locations in Linz and a virtual art gallery. The motto of their journey into the future and back again is “Welcome to Planet B. A different life is possible — but how?”

The Highlights of Ars Electronica 2022

The Festival University (started 18.8.2022)

In times of increasingly massive droughts, should water be a private or a public good? Can we consider nuclear power “green” in a world craving ever more energy, and must we? And who has the enforceable right to be considered a climate refugee from what point on?

Big questions of our time, answers from young people from all over the world, outstanding expertise in the fields of art, science, business, journalism and civil society, a “trial” open to the public — the prototypical Festival University of Johannes Kepler University and Ars Electronica enters its second round in 2022. Since August 18, 200 young people from more than 70 countries have been making guest appearances in Linz and meeting personalities such as Franz Fischler (former Federal Minister and EU Commissioner for Agriculture), Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker (environmental scientist, former Member of the German Bundestag and former Vice-President of the Club of Rome), Friedrich Hinterberger (Vice-President — Club of Rome), Miranda Marcus (Head of BBC News Lab), Sarah Newman (Director of Art & Education at metaLAB at Harvard), Jayati Ghosh (Development Economist, Chair of the Center for Economic Studies NJU), Giulia Foscari (Architect, Founder of UNLESS, Project Director Antarctic Resolution), Gianni Riotta (Journalist La Stampa, Washington Post, Le Monde, New York Times and Director of Data Lab at LUISS), Laurie Anderson (film director, composer, musician, fighter for human rights), Tina Auer and Tim Boykett (Time’s Up), Mike Artner (Fridays for Future) and more. All these encounters revolve around the global and local consequences of climate change and how we can deal with them. The highlight and conclusion of the prototype, which will run for several weeks, will be “court hearings” open to the public during the Ars Electronica Festival. There, the complex issues raised earlier about water, energy and migration will be discussed from different points of view and possible solutions will be outlined. The Festival University, which runs from August 18 to September 14, is made possible by Johannes Kepler University, Ars Electronica and the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education, Science and Research.

State of the ART(ist) (started Tuesday, 23.8.2022)
In view of the Russian invasion of Ukraine this summer, Ars Electronica and the Austrian Federal Ministry for International and European Affairs issued a worldwide Open Call to artists who are threatened, arrested or persecuted because of the political dimension of their works. The invitation elicited 357 submissions from 40 countries. Björn Geldhof, artistic director of PinchukArtCentre in Kyiv, Ukraine, Boris Magrini, curator at HEK in Basel, Switzerland, and Marita Muukkonen, co-founder and co-director of Artists at Risk in Finland, reviewed these 357 submissions and selected eleven that elucidate the “State of the ART(ist)” and will be shown in a virtual art gallery as part of Ars Electronica 2022. Some of the artists will come to Ars Electronica in Linz and talk about what they stand for and why they’re not willing to give up their resistance, despite extreme danger to life and limb. The talks will take place in “Kepler’s Garden” (Kepler Hall), but will also be available as a stream: Friday, Sept. 9 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on “State of Emergency,” Saturday Sept. 10 from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on “State of Urgency,” and Sunday, Sept. 11 from noon to 1:30 p.m. on “State of Convergency.”

Tuesday, 6.9.2022: The Pre-Opening Walk
The very first exploration tour of “Planet B” starts at 4:00 p.m. sharp. The meeting point is Linz’s Mariendom, whose huge church space will be transformed by Uwe Rieger (DE/NZ), Yinan Liu (NZ), Tharindu Kaluarachchi (LK) and Amit Barde (IN) into a fantastic world of light, form and structure. Their project, “Light Sense,” is a huge, walk-in architecture that communicates with its visitors and, depending on their emotional state, presents itself as a pavilion of love, anger, curiosity or joy.

The tour continues to the banks of the Danube, to the LENTOS Kunstmuseum Linz, where media artists from Latin America show how virtuously the old and the new can come together. Modern technologies help to reappraise traditions and memories or to explore and protect ecosystems that are thousands of years old.

At 6:30 p.m., the group will arrive at the University of Art on Linz’s Hauptplatz and will be welcomed by representatives of 24 art universities from all over the world. After two years of pandemic, Campus Exhibition is once again a coveted and very lively stage and platform for presenting and networking.

At 7:30 p.m. the Atelierhaus Salzamt will open its doors and present itself as an exhibit of the Campus Exhibition.

The final stage of the pre-opening walk leads across the Danube to the Ars Electronica headquarters and Deep Space 8K. Earlier this year the Ars Electronica Futurelab team catapulted it to the next level; now this unique projection space will once again become an immersive stage for performances and concerts that are as unusual as they are outstanding. It also offers opportunities to examine world-famous works of art in astonishing detail.

Wednesday, 7.9.2022: The Opening Day

On the first “official” day of Ars Electronica, “Planet B” blossoms in all its diversity and splendor. Kepler’s Garden on the campus of Johannes Kepler University Linz form the largest and most lush “continent.” This is where the 200 participants of the Festival University work, where large exhibitions are shown, where conferences and lectures take place, where create your world is located, and so on, and so on

… but first things first:

STUDIO(dys)TOPIA — At the Peak of Humankind

The exhibition “STUDIO(dys)TOPIA — At the Peak of Humankind” is dedicated to the theme of Ars Electronica 2022. It outlines Homo Sapiens’ incredible run of success — and asks whether this success will now be our undoing? The exhibition recalls all the milestones that have lined our path, from the cave campfire to the virtual here and now, and how they have solidified the belief in our uniqueness, our superiority and our claim to dominance. But the exhibition also shows what a high price we have had to pay — and are still paying — for all those successes and breakthroughs. STUDIO(dys)TOPIA is not interested in how to fix which bug, but in how we have to develop ourselves and our society to achieve sustainability. Artistic projects negotiate our self-image, our attitude towards other living beings and nature, our canon of values and ask about our willingness to cooperate and co-create. STUDIO(dys)TOPIA underlines that no technology, no matter how powerful, will save us, but that we ourselves have to change and reinvent ourselves in order to be able to continue on our path successfully — that is, differently. The exhibition “STUDIO(dys)TOPIA — At the Peak of Humankind” is on view at Kepler’s Garden (Science Park 4) from September 7-11.

Ars Electronica Garden Exhibition
Although it is undisputed that those who are already privileged also feel the effects of crises to a lesser extent or later than others, in the end we are all in the same boat. The pandemic made this very point clear, and slowly but surely this realization is taking hold with regard to the climate crisis as well. The exhibition at this year’s Ars Electronica Garden shows the consequences of global warming around the globe and how people in Auckland, Barcelona, Bologna, the Bahamas, New York, Seoul, Tokyo and Utrecht are dealing with it. Here and there, artists, designers, scientists and activists are tinkering with the toolbox for living in the climate crisis (Tools for a Warming Planet / Sara Dean (US), Beth Ferguson (US), Marina Monsonís (ES)) or asking how the chemical compounds that hold our world together smell and how this smell affects our well-being (Chemical Ecosystem / Yolanda Uriz Elizalde (ES)). They contrast our imperfect algorithms and their limited understanding of the world with our own imperfection and limited understanding of the world (And We Thought / Sineglossa (IT)) or consider whether we should entrust the salvation of the terrestrial ecosystem to an AI to which our greed is as alien as our recklessness (Aquaterrestrial Recolonization / University of The Bahamas (BS), AI.R LAB Science (US/RS/IT)).

Cue Ars Electronica Garden: in the face of an almost impenetrable thicket of travel and exit restrictions, Ars Electronica 2020 and 2021 transformed itself into a completely decentralized, hybrid communications experiment that sought above all to remain in conversation with one another. This flight forward became the initial spark for the formation of a global network of partners that will continue to participate in the Festival for Art, Technology and Society in 2022. The joint Ars Electronica Garden exhibition will be on view in “Kepler’s Garden” (Science Park 4) from September 7 to 11.

CyberArts Exhibition 2022
Exactly 2,338 artistic projects by artists from 88 countries were submitted to the Prix Ars Electronica 2022 — a small but excellent selection of them will be shown in the CyberArts exhibition. Here, AI systems, game engines and 3D animations form CG avatars that radically question our identities (Being / Rashaad Newsome (US)); robots become our physical representatives and give us new opportunities for social participation (DAWN Avatar Robot Cafe ver.β / Ory Yoshifuji / Ory Lab (JP)), and citizens committed to freedom use new technologies to “resist like bacteria” ( Resist like bacteria / Jung Hsu (TW), Natalia Rivera (CO)). In addition, musician, composer, filmmaker, writer, and media artist Laurie Anderson (US) demonstrates the virtuosity of walking between genres while bringing “stories into things.” The CyberArts show can be seen from September 7 to 11 in “Kepler’s Garden” (Mensa Building).

The STARTS Prize exhibition
“Planet B” is not an alien planet that will save us by allowing us to continue as before. It stands for the “Plan B” that we need in order to ensure a future worth living for here on Earth. Regardless of what exactly we include in this “Plan B,” we will have to leave behind the naïve credo of eternal growth and the blind belief in linear progress once and for all. Innovation, too, will have to be reinterpreted and adjusted to meet other demands. The exhibition for this year’s STARTS Prize of the European Commission shows what such innovation should look like in the 21st century. Eleven projects at the interface of science, technology and art are presented, which promise not only economic, but also ecological and social benefits: Prototypical, publicly accessible “classrooms” help to deal with digital information and disinformation (The Glass Room: Misinformation Community Edition / Tactical Tech (INT)), a community not only uses new technologies but is involved in decisions regarding their application and the value they create (Holly+ / Holly Herndon (US), Mathew Dryhurst, Herndon Dryhurst Studio). There is also advocacy for a continent without a population but whose fate affects us all (Antarctic Resolution / Giulia Foscari (IT), UNLESS). The STARTS Prize exhibition will be on display in “Kepler’s Garden” (Mensa building) from September 7 to 11.

LIT Exhibition
To interweave art and science more closely and, above all, sustainably, to initiate an open transfer of knowledge and to establish a concept of technology that places us humans at the center — these are the core concerns of the collaboration between the Linz Institute of Technology (LIT) and Ars Electronica. This becomes visible in the form of the exhibition that the LIT is contributing to the festival again this year, making visible “Black Holes” whose algorithms unleash a gravitation that engulfs everything else (Black Holes of Popularity / A. B. Melchiorre (IT), O. Lesota (RU), M. Schedl (AT), F. Schubert (AT), M. Moscati (IT), D. Penz (AT), E. Dobetsberger (AT), J. Usorac (BA), A. Hausberger (AT), S. Pile (RU), A. Ebner (AT)), makes art no longer for people but for the omnipresent technology (Ars for Nons / Lea Luka Sikau (DE), Denisa Pubalova (CZ), Michael Artner (AT), Julia Wurm (AT)) or promotes the circular economy and invites all visitors to creatively recycle plastic (Re-wasted / Martin Reiter (AT), Jörg Fischer (AT), Johannes Braumann (AT), Florian Nimmervoll (AT)). The LIT exhibition can be seen from September 7 to 11 in “Kepler’s Garden” (Learning Center).

Interface Cultures
The Linz Art University has not only been a longstanding collaborator of Ars Electronica; it has also helped shape the festival’s development. We can see this in the large retrospective by Christa Sommerer & Laurent Mignonneau, on display in the OK Linz, or the Campus Exhibition, in which 24 art universities from all over the world are participating again this year alone (see next chapter). The Linz Art University also uses the festival as an opportunity to present itself: In the “Interface Cultures” exhibition, its students always contribute fresh, unusual and provocative perspectives. The title of this year’s exhibitions is “Of Black Swans …” and deals with bridges between art and science, disciplines, cultures, languages, people. The exhibition “Interface Cultures” can be seen from September 7 to 11 in “Kepler’s Garden” (Kepler Building).

Campus Exhibition
Since 2002, Linz Art University has been inviting art universities from all over the world to Linz as part of Ars Electronica. In 2022, no fewer than 24 academic institutions will accept this invitation and present works by their professors and students, including Aalto University School of Arts, Design and Architecture, Arizona State University, Bauhaus University in Weimar, Birmingham City University, Korea National University of Arts (K-ARTS), Musrara the Naggar School of Art and Society, Technical University Berlin (TU), Universidad Austral de Chile, University of the Arts Berlin (UdK), University of Auckland, University College London, University of Applied Sciences Berlin, University of the Arts London or University of Tokyo. The Campus Exhibition will be shown in the building of the Linz University of Art on Hauptplatz and can be seen from September 7 to 10.

A parallel (r)evolution – Digital Art in Latin America
In the immediate vicinity of the Kunstuniversität, at the LENTOS Kunstmuseum Linz, the realms of Planet B are also blossoming. They are being created by artists from Latin America who are using new technologies to explore their identity, culture and history: Photogrammetry, drones and satellite imagery are used, for example, to identify wetlands and study endangered plant species (Cenizas del Paraná / Electrobiota Collective (Argentina/Mexico)), new media and electronic textiles are put at the service of feminist concerns (¿La has visto…? (Have You Seen Her?) / Dora Bartilotti (Mexico)), light, string instruments and architecture become tools and media to trace the materiality of sound and its effects on our perception of space (time slip, a song for structural comfort / Thessia Machado (Brazil, based in United States)), the social dimension of the interplay between omnipresent technology and our biological organism is explored (Chimera, Expanded Bodies / Amor Muñoz (Mexico)), faded photographs, book pages, scribbles on walls and today’s AI systems, in turn, form a unique memory of long-forgotten everyday life in old houses whose functionality has changed again and again over time (The Walls Know / Ana Elena Tejera). “A parallel (r)evolution — Digital Art in Latin America” is a joint project of Cisneros Fontanals Art Foundation (CIFO), LENTOS Kunstmuseum and Ars Electronica and can be seen at LENTOS Kunstmuseum from September 7 to 11.

Festival Line-Up at Deep Space 8K
It’s a crowd-puller all year round and especially exciting during the festival — we’re talking about Deep Space 8K at the Ars Electronica Center, which was upgraded to the next level in late 2021/early 2022 with a whole series of new technical components and software upgrades. As part of the festival, the immersive space will be the setting for a tête-à-tête with the high-resolution Mona Lisa (The Mona Lisa / Vincent Delieuvin (FR), Christelle Terrier (FR), Roei Amit (FR)) and puts frescoes of the Sistine Chapel in the limelight on a huge scale, opening up insights into the work and life of the great Pietro Perugino (Gigapixel Images from the Vatican Museums — The Frescoes by Pietro Perugino in the Sistine Chapel: Beauty Leading to Faith / Dr. Barbara Jatta (IT), Dr. Rosanna Di Pinto (IT)). But Deep Space 8K also becomes an observatory from which we can gaze into the infinite expanses of space, becoming aware of the uniqueness and vulnerability of our tiny little Earth (Searching for Planet B: How Astronomy Visualization and Remote Sensing Guide Us to Humanity’s Future / Dan Tell (US)). And it becomes a stage on which a musician, a dancer and a visual artist put their thoroughly contradictory relationship to control and chaos to the test — and ours too (un ctrl – a tilt into chaos / Daniel Kohlmeigner (AT), Martin Retschitzegger (AT), Cat Jimenez (AT)). The festival lineup at Deep Space 8K will be presented from Sept. 7-11.

4D box / SH4D0W – An AI Performance in 3D
It is the first theater production in which an artificial intelligence plays the leading role. The play by Mikael Fock (DK) is inspired by the wise scholar and his shadow in the fairy tale of the same name by H.C. Andersen. It focuses on the encounter of a human being with his virtual shadow, represented by data-driven artificial AI systems. The performance is an immersive experience — an immersion in a three-dimensional universe of sound, light and the visual representation of an “intelligent” machine interacting with its environment and a human actor. The play can be experienced in Kepler’s Garden (Kepler Hall) on Sept. 7 and 8 from 3 to 4 p.m. and 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., and on Sept. 9 from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m.

Festival Opening
Because even on Planet B, social life needs rites and traditions, the opening of Ars Electronica 2022 will begin Wednesday evening at 7:00 p.m. sharp. Karl Markovics and Julia Franz Richter will read excerpts from two literary masterpieces by Stefan Zweig and tell a saga that deals with rise and fall, beginnings and endings. The oceans, so unfathomable and deep, serve as projection surfaces for all our dreams, fears, cruelties and longings, and are the scenes of our great deeds and achievements, but also victims of destruction, exploitation and extinction by us humans. Afterwards, the chefs of muto invite you to an ocean buffet, while Moritz Simon Geist & Portrait XO provide the music with their techno-robots. The opening event for Ars Electronica 2022 begins on September 7 at 7:00 p.m. in Kepler’s Garden.

Thursday, 8.9.2022: The Futurelab Day

Creative Resilience for a Planet B
Morning Inspirations & Afternoon Experiences from the Ars Electronica Futurelab

How can creativity, art and technology help us overcome crises, master challenges and shape a different, positive future together? Under the motto “Creative Resilience for a Planet B,” the Ars Electronica Futurelab invites you to a full day of roundtables, workshops and immersive presentations that all look to the future. The Linz-based think tank’s artists, researchers and developers will be there, as will their colleagues and research partners from all over the world. Representing industry will be experts such as Adrian van Hoodydonk (Senior Vice President BMW Group Design (NL)), Gianpaolo Barozzi (Cisco People Experience Global Lead (IT)) and Nobuyuki Oishi (Sr. Producer, Digital Business in Nikkei Inc. (JP)). Perspectives from the arts and sciences include Martina Mara (Professor of Robopsychology at Johannes Kepler University Linz (AT)), Hiroshi Ishiguru (PhD Professor at the Graduate School of Engineering Science at Osaka University and Director of Hiroshi Ishiguro Laboratories (JP)), Natalia Rivera (TW) and Jung Hsu (US) (both from “ Resist like bacteria”), and Yuima Nakazato (Fashion Designer and Founder of Yuima Nakazato Co, Ltd. (JP)). Also expected are Ernst Ulrich von Weizsäcker (scientist, author and politician (DE)), Till Kellerhoff (Program Director of the Club of Rome and Manager of the Earth4All Initiative (DE)), Joanna Wright (artist and documentary filmmaker (UK)) and Sarah Kriesche (science journalist at Ö1 (AT)). Futurelab Day will take place on September 8; Morning Inspirations will start at 11:00 am, Afternoon Experiences will end at 5:45 pm.

Night Performances of the Ars Electronica Futurelab
From 7:00 p.m. the Night Performances will start in Deep Space 8K. All festival visitors are cordially invited. The concerts, presentations and performances that take place here until 11:00 p.m. are characterized by a very special spirit of experimentation. In short: an unforgettable evening awaits you. The Night Performances will conclude Futurelab Day on September 8.

Friday, 9.9.2022: the S+T+ARTS Day

Science, technology and the arts determine the content and the name of the European Commission’s STARTS initiative, which aims to promote contemporary innovations in and for Europe. The STARTS Prize is a high-profile instrument for bringing best-practice examples to the public’s attention, and STARTS Day at Ars Electronica is an annual format that serves as a forum for network partners from all over Europe. The day-long program includes lectures, panel discussions, guided tours and workshops. With Selina Neirok Leem (MH), Laurie Anderson (US), Charles Amirkhanian (US), Giulia Foscari (IT) and Aimee Van Wynsberghe (CA), top-class innovators will once again be guests in Linz this year. The S+T+ARTS Day will take place on September 9 in Kepler’s Garden, with the program starting at 10:00 and ending at 18:00.

Festival University – Court Session I
After weeks of research, exchange and discussion with the numerous experts of a top-class international faculty, the finale of the Festival University is coming up. On Friday, September 9, the first of a total of three simulated court hearings will be held in public in the best democratic tradition. The first issue at stake is whether water should be a private good or a public good in times of increasingly severe drought. The Court Session will take place on the Festival University Stage in front of the Learning Center. It begins at 10:30 a.m. and ends at 5:30 p.m.

Chamber Music Paths through Kepler’s Garden
Since 2003, Ars Electronica and the Bruckner Orchestra Linz have been rehearsing all kinds of unusual bridge-building between analog and digital, between the music of the past and the sounds of the present, between art and science. In 2022, their joint project will be presented — once again — in a completely different way: ensembles and soloists of the Bruckner Orchestra Linz, together with their artistic director Norbert Trawöger, have put together a three-hour program that will transform Kepler’s Garden into “garden of chamber music.” The musicians will play in the open air and wander between pieces, styles and epochs — with the audience in tow. The chamber music paths through Kepler’s Garden will be laid out on September 9, between 1:30 and 5:45 pm.

Award Ceremony
The Awards Ceremony will begin at 6:30 p.m. sharp, during which the winners of the Prix Ars Electronica, the STARTS Prize of the European Commission and the Award for Digital Humanity of the Austrian Ministry of International and European Affairs will be invited to the stage. Among the congratulators will be Federal President Alexander Van der Bellen, Vice Chancellor Werner Kogler and Foreign Minister Alexander Schallenberg.

Directly after the award ceremony, the Serbian piano duo Sonja Loncar & Andrija Pavlovic aka LP Duo will premiere new compositions for two hybrid pianos as part of Beyond Quantum Music. With his impressive performance, the Tehran-born musician and media artist Arash Akbar will then bring the evening to a close. The Award Ceremony will take place in the middle of Kepler’s Garden (inner courtyard of Auhof Palace / Circus of Knowledge) and will begin at 6:30 pm.

Saturday, 10.9.2022: The Plan B Day

Treetop Talks & Job Buffet
Slow dating meets speed dating. The former takes place at lofty heights, far from the hustle and bustle of Kepler’s Garden: Together with Teufelberger, a family-owned company specializing in fiber ropes, steel cables and strapping bands, and professional arborists, Ars Electronica is turning the treetop of a 40-meter-high sycamore tree into an extraordinary meeting zone. Two people are hoisted up into the canopy at the same time, briefly losing the ground beneath their feet. Both find themselves in a completely new situation that has little to do with their everyday lives and should make it easier for us to find a common level. The Tree Top Talks will be offered from September 7 to September 11 in “Kepler’s Garden” (in the plane tree between the Learning Center and the Uni-Center).
Job Buffet, on the other hand, is the motto of another, also quite unusual, project that this year’s Ars Electronica has developed in conjunction with the AMS Upper Austria: In order to prepare the ground for fruitful encounters between job seekers and employers, Martin Honzik, Managing Director of the Ars Electronica Festival, first invites people to take a highlight tour of “Kepler’s Garden.” The destination of this walk lined with ideas, visions and prototypes is the sound park next to the pond that’s now being transformed into a job “buffet.” In the shade of old trees and in the midst of an art and culture festival, employers and job seekers can engage in conversations that take place in a completely different setting and, for that very reason, perhaps proceed in a completely different way than usual. The Job Buffet organized by Ars Electronica and AMS Upper Austria will be offered on September 10 from 2:30 – 4:00 pm in “Kepler’s Garden” (Klangpark).

create your world
Although this category is designed as a playground for the younger generation, it always ends up as a place to stroll through fascinating experiments, which almost every festival visitor feels compelled to visit a second time. It’s create your world, the future festival of the next generation with many years of tradition behind it already. This year’s edition is dedicated to several issues that are currently occupying the thoughts of many young people. Their wishes and ideas about the future will be collected, milled into wooden blocks and assembled into a sculpture (Build Together / Don’t waste IT / VFQ Gesellschaft für Frauen und Qualifikation mbH (AT), played in FM4’s analog Spielekammerl away from virtual worlds (FM4 Spielekammerl feat. Paradice / ORF radio FM4 (AT), Paradice (AT)), the gong was sounded for a sumo fight for low-tech robots and technical dilettantes (Hebocon / Ars Electronica create your world (AT)), 3D printers, laser cutters, sewing machines and laptops were used in the mobile Maker*Space of the Vienna Museum of Technology (roadLAB – Mobiler Maker*Space / Technisches Museum Wien (AT)), and so on. CREATE YOUR WORLD can be experienced from September 7 to 11 in “Kepler’s Garden.”

Festival University — Court Session II
Saturday, September 10, the second “trial” of the Festival University will take place. On the agenda this time is the rather explosive topic of energy, specifically the question of whether nuclear power should be considered green or not. The Court Session will take place on the Festival University Stage in front of the Learning Center. It starts at 10:30 am and ends at 5:30 pm.

Transformation Lounge
Questioning learned patterns, throwing the usual strategies overboard, thinking in new ways and arriving at common solutions — the Transformation Lounge, developed together with the large Japanese advertising and PR agency Hakuhodo, is not an exhibition, it is a place of encounter and discourse. The question of how we can become a sustainable society is joined here by the question of how to communicate about change; how do we need to talk about sustainability, how do we talk about the progress we have made, but above all, how do we talk about our failures in an open and transparent way? In order to avoid always dealing with this in an abstract, global and correspondingly noncommittal manner, Ars Electronica makes itself the subject of discussion in the Transformation Lounge: visitors learn exactly what’s on the festival’s sustainability agenda and which partners it is working with to implement this agenda. They’ll hear about how the green plants that contribute to the festival’s atmosphere every fall are cultivated by Linz’s city gardeners starting in the spring and then returned to them. Or that the edible herbs that adorn the Transformation Lounge are not merely decorative, but are given to visitors at the end of the festival so they can use them to spice up their home-cooked dishes. We learn that hundreds of computers and screens used by the festival team are provided by AfB (Arbeit für Menschen mit Behinderung — Work for People with Disabilities), an eco-social enterprise that specializes in taking over decommissioned IT hardware, deleting the data on it in a certified manner and preparing the equipment for reuse. We also learn that Linz AG makes every festival ticket a free ticket for all public transportation in the city and that the festival has entered into a cooperation with Klimaticket. And it is explained how the festival team is working with experts from Brantner Green Solutions to apply the concept of the circular economy to its own waste management.

Another major topic at the Transformation Lounge is the question of what kind of mobility we’ll need or want in the future. BMW will be an excellent discussion and research partner of the Ars Electronica Futurelab. In the Experience Lab, designed in collaboration with Supersense, a Viennese experimental laboratory for sensory perception and research into the interface between analog and digital, representatives of very different worlds can and should meet and sketch out how they would like to get from here to there on Planet B.
The Transformation Lounge can be visited from September 7 to 11 in “Kepler’s Garden” (forecourt of the Learning Center).

Theme Symposium
If the earth age of humanity is not to become a catastrophe, we must change course as quickly as possible. The only question is how. Studiotopia is an initiative that seeks to promote collaboration between cultural and research institutions, universities, innovation centers, the creative scene and citizens. The focus is on interfaces for the collection and transmission of knowledge, the role and importance of new creative commons, and co-operation and co-creation by stakeholders. With Carmody Grey (GB), Francesca Thyssen-Bornemisza (CH/AT), Audrey Tang (EN), Babitha George (IN), Audrey-Flore Ngomsik (FR/BE) and many other experts from all over the world, the Ars Electronica 2022 theme symposium has a top-class line-up. The conference will be held on September 9 from 11:00 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. in “Kepler’s Garden” (Lecture Hall 1).

Songs for Amelia Earhart — Laurie Anderson in Concert
Filharmonie Brno (CZ), Dennis Russell Davies (US/AT), Rubin Kodheli (US)
Laurie Anderson has been a fixture on the international media art scene for decades. The work of the musician, composer, filmmaker, author and media artist revolves around the relationship between people and technology and is characterized by a high degree of sociopolitical commitment. Laurie Anderson was honored as a “Visionary Pioneer of Media Arts” at this year’s Prix Ars Electronica.

In the course of his exceptional career, Dennis Russell Davies has already implemented a whole series of extraordinary projects, staged memorable concerts and initiated groundbreaking initiatives. As conductor of the Bruckner Orchestra Linz, he was responsible for initiating the Ars Electronica’s “Big Concert Night” in 2003, and in 2022 he is instrumental in bringing his longtime friend and artistic companion Laurie Anderson to Linz.

Together with Dennis Russell Davies, the Filharmonie Brno (CZ) and Rubin Kodheli (US), Laurie Anderson invites you to a concert evening at Ars Electronica 2022 that is all about another great woman. With “Songs for Amelia,” Laurie Anderson tells the story of Amelia Earhart, a passionate pioneer of early aviation who in 1932 became the first woman to cross the Atlantic and five years later disappeared without a trace in her plane. “Songs for Amelia” will be performed on Saturday, Sept. 10 from 5 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. and 8 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. on the stage in front of Auhof Palace.

Sunday, 11.9.2022: The PRIX Day

Prix forums
Seeing the works of today’s most exciting media artists is one (great) thing, but being able to meet and interview them in person is quite another. Sunday is the last day of Ars Electronica 2022, and it’s (media) art that will be the crowning finale. The winners of this year’s Prix Ars Electronica will be our guests, and their projects will be presented in the CyberArts show. The guests will talk about their artistic practice, explain their methods and approaches, and talk about how they envision “Planet B.” To kick things off, Ekaterina Nikitina (RU), Gabino Carballo (ES), Tatiana Kourotchkina (RU), and Zackery Denfeld (US) discuss how art and science can contribute to the development of new tools and strategies against the climate crisis and the species extinction it threatens. Claudia Schnugg (AT) will be the moderator. Marc Hericher (FR), Rashaad Newsome (US) and Yoriko Mizushiri (JP), three outstanding artists, will be interviewed by Isabelle Avers (FR) on current trends and issues in the field of computer animation. José-Carlos Mariategui (PE/GB) will then invite Cristhian Avila (PE), Jung Hsu (TW), Natalia Rivera (CO), Sam Lavigne (US) and Tega Brain (AU) to the podium — their topic will be current and future expressions of interactive art. The last panel will be chaired by Thomas Gegenhuber (AT), who will welcome Amina Khoulani (SY), Kiya Tadele Atnafu (KE) and Ory Yoshifuji (JP) to talk about digital communities that are making a name for themselves worldwide with their struggle for fundamental rights, freedom and self-determination. The artists’ talks on the Prix Ars Electronica 2022 will take place on Sunday, September 11, 10:00 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. in “Kepler’s Garden” (Lecture Hall 1).

Festival University — Court Session III

Migration is the focus of the third and final Court Session on Sunday, September 11 of this year’s Festival University: In view of the increasingly drastic effects of global warming, the question arises as to who may claim the status of a climate refugee and as of when. The Court Session will take place on the Festival University Stage in front of the Learning Center. It begins at 10:30 a.m. and ends at 5:30 p.m.

Maki Namekawa needs no great introduction. The outstanding pianist’s concerts have been among the highlights of every Ars Electronica for years. In 2022, Maki Namekawa will take her place at the concert grand three times; at the Festival Opening (Wednesday, September 7), she’ll play music by Claude Debussy and Philip Glass; at the Futurelab Night (Thursday, September 8), she’ll participate in the performance Life Ink; and on Sunday, September 11, it’ll finally be her turn to close Ars Electronica 2022 with a piano concert. The program will include a new interpretation of Keith Jarrett’s Ritual for Piano Solo from 1974, of which there is only one recording, by a certain Dennis Russell Davies in 1977. Then Maki Namekawa will play the commissioned work Toccata by Joe Hisaishi, a composer, pianist and conductor who has composed music for over a hundred films, and is best known for his work with and between different musical genres. Pianographique will take place on Sunday, Sept. 11 from 1 p.m. 2 p.m. in “Kepler’s Garden” (Circus of Knowledge).

Sujet Ars Electronica Festival 2022 / Photomontage: Moynaq, Aral Sea by Arian Zwegers is licensed under CC-BY-2.0. Dancer inspired by J. Andrews/The Sound of Music; photo: Zoe Goldstein, Photography, JCH fashion design, Silke Grabinger dancer / Printversion / Album

Laurie Anderson (US) / Photo: Tim Knox / Printversion / Album

LightSense / Uwe Rieger (DE/NZ), Yinan Liu (NZ), Tharindu Kaluarachchi (LK), Amit Barde (IN) / Photo: Uwe Rieger and Yinan Liu / Printversion / Album

!brute_force / Maja Smrekar (SI) and Jonas Jørgensen (DK) / Photo: Hana Jošić / Printversion / Album

4D box / SH4D0W — An AI Performance in 3D / Mikael Fock (DK), Carl Emil Carlsen (DK), Emilie Rasmussen (DK), Cecilie Waagner Falkenstrøm (DK), Yann Coppier (DK), Vertigo (DK) / Photo: 4D box / Printversion / Album

Festival University / Photo: JKU / Printversion / Album

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