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a’21: online VR Storytellers and Hackathon
7.April 2021 16:00 - 17:30
► a'21: online VR workshops and hackathon
“Urban spaces and places transform the way we explain the world to ourselves and others and define the way we see ourselves; provide the necessary infrastructure to transform the way we see our bodies and genders globally.” (Jerram, 2011)
:: ABOUT THIS EVENT ::
Amber Network Festival hosts an international online VR workshop and hackathon. V’R’ Storytellers invites artists, urbanists, designers, coders, 3D artists, photographers and other professionals to generate creative stories for a virtual exhibition in Umurbey Neighbourhood (Izmir/Turkey) hosted by Darağaç Collective. Regardless of its location on the map, this district particularly reminds us of many common problems which are discussed throughout the world.
The V’R’ Storytellers revolves around a series of hands-on workshops where artists and participants can share their projects and insights, and concludes with a 3-day hackathon.
During the hackathon, participants will be invited to utilize VR and develop artistic experiences to the theme: boundaries of urban transformation/gentrification/renewal and refugee/immigrant/guest/neighbor. These concepts support the scope of the festival's theme of Post-Digital Ignorance and the urban texture. Interested participants will be encouraged to utilise the Umurbey Neighbourhood/Daragac as a canvas for their work though it is not a requirement.
No previous experience is required. Women, POC, LGBTQ+ and others under-represented in the tech world are highly encouraged to apply.
►Who can participate? This event is open to artists, designers, coders, digital artists, photographers and people from other creative fields. amberNetworkFestival will assure the streaming of the different workshops on a’21 Video Conference Server link to the participants and will prepare an email group for each team. The Compilation of projects will be presented on a’21 Video Conference ServerSun.
Application procedure: The deadline for applications is Friday, March 12 // 150 words motivation letter for "Amber’21 online VR workshop and hackathon" via email VR@ambernetworkfestival.org
About Daragac İzmir: The Darağaç Collective (DC) is a creative collaboration between a group of artists who live and practice art in the Umurbey Neighborhood in Izmir, Turkey, and members of the local community. Umurbey is located close to the southeastern shore of Izmir Bay, a mainly industrial and commercial zone which is popularly known as Darağaç. The neighborhood has a diverse character with industrial buildings, abandoned factories, warehouses and houses, mainly two-story, some of which date back to the late 19th and the early 20th century. In the last few years, Darağaç has received considerable media and scholarly interest both for the contemporary art exhibitions organised by the DC and the active contribution of the local community in both hosting and participating in these exhibitions. The main goal of DC is to transform the neighbourhood into a space where young artists can show their work and to create a common discourse. Darağaç, due to the lack of venues in Izmir, acts as a reconciliation zone for the emerging artist and the public space. More information: https://www.daragac.com/en/about/
About a’21 amberNetworkFestival Art Technology Thought March - May 2021 a’21 is produced by Oyoun (Berlin) in collaboration with amberPlatform (İstanbul) // a’21 amberNetworkFestival will take place between the 10th of March and 18th of May 2021 at Oyoun in Berlin and in the network nodes amberPlatform (İstanbul), Darağaç (Izmir), New Media society (Tehran), DAH Project (Shiraz), KounAktif (Casablanca), BAAB (Khartoum), Shahraban (Baalbek), Bishkek Contemporary (Bishkek) and ADEF (Cairo, Berlin) currently. All the activities will be hybrid; in various locations and online at the same time. a’21 is taking place in a very special time as a truly decentralised and international festival. We are developing the Collaborative (Network) Curation where the network members and invited artists are curating, creating, and performing collaboratively remotely along the two-month-long festival. More information: www.ambernetworkfestival.org/ 30 participants
::PROGRAMMING: WORKSHOP & HACKATHON::
● Say Hello! Day-1: Saturday, March 20 (12:00-14:00 CET) Artists and participants share their intentions and projects (if there is already).
● Open Room (Weekly Get-togethers) Open rooms for an-hour and on-demand meetings with artists Accompanied by artists as mentors who are available. Free hours to provide chit chat among the participants. Day-2: March 25 (16:00-17:00 CET) Day-3: April 1 (16:00-17:00 CET) Day-4: April 8 (16:00-17:00 CET)
● VR Talks Speakers will talk about their case studies/artworks/research areas etc. Day-5: April 5 (16:00-17:30 CET) Digital Darağaç Day-6: April 6 (16:00-17:30 CET) Soheila Golestani Day-7: April 7 (16:00-17:30 CET) Selim Harbi Day-8: April 8 (16:00-17:30 CET) Mohsen Hazrati Day-9: April 9 (16:00-17:30 CET) Rachel Uwa
● HACKATHON Day-10: Friday, April 16 (12:00 - 13:00 CET) | online & offline Day-11: Saturday, April 17 | offline Day-12: Sunday, April 18 (15:00 - 17:00 CET) | online & offline Compilation of projects
VR TALKS 1. Digital Daragac Monday, 5 April, 16:00-17:30
Talk by Guzden Varinlioglu
Description: We have been witnessing a period in which artworks transfer from galleries and museums into spaces of daily life and architecture becomes an artwork. As an alternative to institutional spaces of museum and gallery, artists are forming art collectives by settling at low-income neighbourhoods. On the contrary to the conventional, introverted spaces designed to function particularly for exhibition, these collectives, without an official and institutional substructure, signify a hybrid, temporary, mobile and functionally blurred concept of “art-space”. In this framework, a case study is conducted on Darağaç Collective which live and produce at Umurbey Neighbourhood. The concept of art-space is compared with other art collectives in Turkey by means of group and individual interviews, participant observations, and archival research. This research examines this alternative art collective which has turned the neighborhood into an art-space. There is no museum / virtual museum in Izmir to house works of the artists. Therefore, artists initiated independent art collectives. DARAĞAÇ artworks are produced and exhibited in uncontrolled environment of the streets of Alsancak Umurbey Neighbourhood. Using these artworks as a case study, this research intends to design and implement an augmented reality that works in public spaces where there is uncontrolled light, sound and human traffic.
Bio: Through the course of Guzden Varinlioglu's undergraduate education in architecture at METU and her graduate education in graphic design at Bilkent University, she became interested in digital technology and its contribution to the preservation and presentation of cultural heritage. Her research period at TAMU in 2010 was followed by a Ph.D. degree from the Program of Art, Design, and Architecture at Bilkent University. In 2011, Guzden received a post-doc position in architectural design computing at ITU, and, in 2013-2014, as a visiting scholar, conducted further research at the Centre of Digital Humanities at UCLA. She is currently serving as Associate Professor of Architecture at the IEU, where she specialises in computational design. At the İzmir University of Economics, she initiated the digital fabrication team (EcoFAB), VRlab and Digital Humanities Lab.
VR TALKS 2. Storytelling in 360 degree Tuesday, April 6, 16:00-17:30
Talk by Soheila Golestani
Description: I will be talking about Storytelling in 360 degrees, while presenting some examples of my works and the way I developed the ideas, translating them into VR films The presentation will include subjects like the structural difference of storytelling & narration in VR space and was experienced before its emergence, and the way we can train our mind to be able to transform our ideas for a 360 degree imagination. In the 2nd part of the talk we will go through the ideas of the participants and how to develop them toward a 360 experience. It is strongly recommended that the participants submit a sketch of what they want to create and a bit of background on their practice and focus.
Bio: Soheila Golestani is a filmmaker and actress based in Tehran, She is a graduate in theater from the theater& cinema faculty of the Art University Tehran and ever since cinema has been her main focus, in 2016 she made “if you go away” the first fiction VR film in Iran which won the best VR film award at Tampre film festival in Finland. She has made Vr documentaries and animation-based projects in 360 degree for theater.
VR TALKS 3. VR, anthropology of tomorrow, connecting narratives and the birth of new archives Wednesday, April 7, 16:00-17:30
Talk by Selim Harbi
Description: Based on my latest VR Project: Afroroutes, I will be addressing the issue of rebuilding the dispatched, forgotten and disfigured narratives , and how VR could be a game changer, reconnecting invisible stories. Also through the process how VR is the anthropology tool of the future par excellence, expanding to the vital issue of new-archive creation.
Bio: Transmedia storyteller & journalist, award-winning director, TEDx Speaker, and World Press Photo grantee. He holds a Bachelor of Art in screen-based and Audiovisual Media from Beuth University of applied sciences - Berlin. He was the director assistant of THE ENEMY , one of the very first VR Projects ever. As a beauty hunter, world connector & passionate traveler, He loves to redefine things, focused on contemporary global affairs, human-driven stories, mobilities issues, and cultural sub- narratives. With a special flair for tech-trends and innovation, He is designing with new media tools cutting-edge projects, always looking for impact and new challenges.
VR TALKS 4. VR/AR Talk, DAHProject Thursday, April 11, 15:00-17:30
Talk by Mohsen Hazrati
Description: Today, Creation with digital tools is not completely restricted to be a professional in using these technologies like before, and every day a new tool with a different level of possibility comes to the market to facilitate the creation process, So a wider range of Ideas could come alive, in the workshop, we will talk about how VR and AR could break the boundaries, open new windows of imagination for artists in any medium and make art creation and curating more accessible.
Bio: Mohsen Hazrati was born in 1987 in Shiraz, Iran. He graduated with a BA in graphic design from Shiraz Art Institute of Higher Education in 2012, minoring in new media and digital art. His works focus on digital culture, new-aesthetic and the integration of these two issues into the Shirazi culture and Iranian mystical literature, and have been exhibited in Transfer and Babycastles Gallery - New York, Telematic Media Arts - San Francisco, V-Gallery Tehran, ESPRONCEDA Institute of Art & Culture - Barcelona etc.
VR TALKS 5. Designing experiences: Considerations for analog and virtual worlds Friday, April 9 16:00-17:30
Talk by Rachel Uwa
Description: When we talk about virtual and augmented realities most often the discussions begin with defining the tools. However, there is much value in stepping back even further and asking ourselves: how do we define an experience? In this talk, I will discuss and share examples around what it means to design an experience with emphasis on how we can connect humans to each other and to themselves more deeply through use of real and virtual spaces.
Bio: Rachel is an artist and organiser whose background is in audio engineering and vfx compositing. She is the founder of School of Machines, Making & Make Believe, a uniquely curated School born in Berlin, Germany in 2014, keen on inventing one-of-a-kind hands-on learning experiences in the field of Art, Technology, Design, and human connection.
* This event is part of Oyoun's a’21 Festival - Post Digital Ignorance x Techno Utopia aiming to challenge the status quo while centring perspectives on non-human life, queer ecology, decolonising knowledge, forced displacement, and more
The project was financed by Berlin’s Hauptstadtkulturfonds.
► See updating festival program on https://ambernetworkfestival.org/
Produced by: Oyoun in collaboration with amberPlatform
Curatorial Team: Amirali Ghasemi, Ali Cem Doğan, Cenkhan Aksoy, Christoph Wachter, Ebru Yetişkin, Ekmel Ertan, Hamza Chamas, Mathias Jud, Milad Forouzandeh, Mohsen Hazrat, Nina Martin, Rajaa Shamam, Youssef El Idrissi Participants include: Eda Sütunç, Danielle Brathwaite-Shirley, Mary Maggic, Rachel Uwa, Renata Salecl, Seloua Luste Boulbina, Pelin Tan, Yara Mekawei, and many more.
Funded by: Capital Cultural Fund
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