Cognitive Space (Liverpool / Montreal)

Cognitive Space can be regarded as our innermost realm of perception; the repository of our memories and experiences, and the stage upon which we infer meaning from a sensory appreciation of the world. The understanding of our external environments and our conceptions of self are derivations of this inner-landscape; the external world is reflected through the lens of our subjective experiences, inner-space and outer-space creating each other reciprocally through cognition.

By its nature, Cognitive Space is a subjective arena; however, the goal of culture can be seen as the creation of shared encounters that manifest a transformed and collective conception of reality. Individuals coming to be unified through participating in the mutual formation of memory and vision. Engaging citizens and artists in such a way, FACT will explore the recesses of Cognitive Space; offering new platforms for expanded perception and the forging of collective identities.

Artists in residence: Sam Meech (United Kingdom) and Darsha Hewitt (Canada)

Living Space (Vienna / Montreal)

Within the Human Futures project, the Media Architecture Institute (MAI) will explore the communal spaces and concepts in Vienna through artistic and cultural practices thus expanding the architectural and urban discussion into a cultural discourse. As playground for its artistic interventions, MAI will focus on ‘Aspern Seestadt’, a new city centre in the east of Vienna, which is currently being realised on a former airport and where 20,000 people will live and another 20,000 people will work. The whole development process being scheduled at over two decades, it is one of the largest city development projects in Europe.

Tackling the concrete example of Aspern Seestadt, the Human Futures project in Vienna will develop artistic interventions that raise awareness for the values of shared neighborhoods and developing tools and media for communication for the residents.

Artists in residence: Tobias Ebsen (Denmark) and Daniel Iregui (Canada)

Networked Space (Aarhus / Montreal)

Wireless networks are everywhere in the urban realm, yet connectivity increasingly operates in the tensions between corporate-owned telecommunications infrastructures and community-owned networks. This tension is especially important to acknowledge when cities (like Aarhus), are promoting ‘smartness’, open data, and increased participation in the development of municipal services. In relation to citizen’s experience of public wifi connections, and the fantasy of always-on global connectivity, this project aims to draw attention to the geo-politics of urban networks through artistic experimentation. Ultimately, this project aims to provide a socio-technical infrastructure for the public to actively participate in such networks in quite different ways than current infrastructures allow.

Artists in residence: Bengt Sjölén & Weise 7 (Germany) and Sébastien Pierre (Canada)

Urban Space (Berlin / Montreal)

The public sphere is created by citizens who step out of their private framework and interact with others. The city needs to offer a platform for that interaction, so that individuals can get together and communicate in the public space. What do these communication platforms look like in times when the public and digital environments merge and the borders between the private and the public become increasingly blurred?

Recognising Urban Media Facades as agora for communication in the public space, our environments are transformed into databases that we can touch and walk upon (Augmented Reality). Sensor networks and public data sources map our movements and interactions and provide enhanced experience beyond (or in addition to) the physical reality. Creating not only awareness but also understanding of the current evolution in our urban environments, the Urban Media Facades scenarios support the idea of the public space as a platform for creativity, visibility and exchange of culture where the public sphere is created in a process of constructive criticism and reflection against the backdrop of increasing commercialization.

Public Art Lab and its topic of ‘Urban media facades as agora for communication in the public space’ will contribute to bring the overall visions and memories of the citizens back to the urban context by developing a concept of high visibility and participation for the Projection Parcours at the Quartier des spectacles in Montreal, in collaboration with all Human Futures artists and partner cities.

Artists in residence: Aram Bartholl (Germany) and Michel de Broin (Canada)