Klaus Obermaier

the concept of … (here and now)

In front of a giant screen, two dancers interact with a cohort of cameras… Their movements are captured by infra-red sensors and projected onto the screen, whereby their bodies become the canvas on which new images take shape. The result is a shifting kaleidoscope of strange, living, quasi-mathematical visual worlds which sometimes seem to be emanating or even escaping from the dancers’ bodies. “Who decides which movement to make: the man or the machine?” Blurring the line between the real and the virtual, Klaus Obermaier loves to subsume his performers’ bodies and physicality in a disconcerting digital universe. With his latest creation, the choreographer/artist has taken a bold new step. He has constructed a system of projectors and infra-red sensor-cameras, trained upon the movements of two dancers. The performers thus find themselves thrown headlong into a living, moving graphical universe: their movements are projected onto the screen, but at the same time their bodies are illuminated by more projected images. This is a true artistic performance, pushing well beyond the frontiers of a standard dance recital, or even a contemporary dance show. A corporeal, temporal performance. A choreography which makes subtle use of its raw materials, deftly combining lights, video, perspectives and the real-time power of bodily movement.

Pedro Lopes, Robert Kovacs, Alexandra Ion, David Lindlbauer and Patrick Baudisch

Ad Infinitum
Ad infinitum is a parasitical entity which lives off human energy. It lives untethered and off the grid. This parasite reverses the dominant role that mankind has with respect to technologies: the parasite shifts humans from “users” to “used”. Ad infinitum co-exists in our world by parasitically attaching electrodes onto the human visitors and harvesting their kinetic energy by electrically persuading them to move their muscles. The only way a visitor can be freed is by seducing another visitor to sit on the opposite chair and take their place. Being trapped in the parasite’s cuffs means getting our muscles electrically stimulated in order to perform a cranking motion as to feed it our kinetic energy. This reminds us that, in the cusp of artificially thinking machines, we are no longer just “users”; the shock we feel in our muscles, the involuntary gesture, acknowledges our intricate relationship to uncanny technological realm around us.

Liu Xiaodong

Weight of insomnia
With his new series of paintings, Liu uses a machine programmed to capture movement in public spaces and translates this to marks on canvas. The machine has no heart, no desires, no ulterior motive. It does not sleep but obeys its instructions for as long as the artist decides. And yet the results have a strange power to move us. It seems that, despite all efforts, subjectivity can never truly be extinguished. Join Liu as he discusses this latest painting project, the conflict and changes in Chinese society that have influenced his artistic approach and how we might all be affected by the ‘weight of insomnia’.

Verena Friedrich

A soap bubble usually remains stable for only a few moments – it is a perfectly formed sphere with an iridescent surface that reflects its surroundings. As one of the classical vanitas symbols the soap bubble traditionally stands for the transience of the moment and the fragility of life. THE LONG NOW approaches the soap bubble from a contemporary perspective – with reference to its chemical and physical properties as well as recent scientific and technological developments. THE LONG NOW is aimed at extending the lifespan of a soap bubble, or even to preserve it forever. Using an improved formula, a machine generates a bubble, sends it to a chamber with a controlled atmosphere and keeps it there in suspension for as long as possible. The project is presented in the form of an experimental set-up in which the newly created soap bubble oscillates permanently between fragility and stability.