Hogeschool Rotterdam Willem de Kooning Academie

OVER THE MOON SYMPOSIUM

OVER THE MOON SYMPOSIUM

Piet Zwart Lens-Based Study Path and International Film Festival Rotterdam present
OVER THE MOON SYMPOSIUM
– imaging technologies versus popular imagination –

Date: Monday 29th January 2017
Time: 10:00 – 18:30
Location: The Hilton Hotel – IFFR conference floor – Coolsingel, Rotterdam
Free entry

Both film studios, business marketeers and media enterprises love to trigger our imagination about space exploration. The images they generate, however, are usually rather regressive than future-oriented. Combining science with a critical creative practice, central speaker Angelo Vermeulen demonstrates how a more diverse and multidisciplinary approach to futurist design can deliver us more relevant models to visualize our future. His keynote will be preceded by talks and presentations on both historical and the most contemporary approaches to visualizing space, by Johann Lurf, Alejandro Bachmann, Kurt Vanhoutte, Natalja Majsova, Neal David Hartmann, Cath Le Couteur and Lawrence Lek.

This symposium is in association with: The Lens-Based Media Study Path : Media Design Programme: Piet Zwart Institute. With additional support from the Swiss Embassy.

Programme: [doors open at 10:00]

10:15 > 10:30 : introduction by Simon Pummell (Piet Zwart) & Edwin Carels (IFFR)

10:30 > 11:15 : Johann Lurf in conversation with Alejandro Bachmann
Gazing at the Stars, Reflecting on Present and Past

11:15 > 12:30 : Natalija Majsova:
The Horizons of a Past Future: Spaceflight in Soviet Science Fiction Cinema

12:30 > 13:15 : Kurt Vanhoutte:
Celestial Bodies: the human orrery, performing science from the 19th to the 21st century

13:15 >14:15 : lunch break

14:15 > 15:00 : Cath Le Couteur:
Project Adrift: The hidden world of space junk

15:00 > 15:45 : Neal David Hartman:
Science storytelling, virtual reality and documenting CERN.

15:45 > 16:30 : Lawrence Lek :
First-Person: Fictional Artists and Post-human Players

16:30 > 17:00 : coffee break

17:00 > 18:30 : Angelo Vermeulen – Masterclass :
Why we don’t need Star Wars. Re-imagining our interstellar future.

18:30 onwards : closing drinks

This symposium makes part of the thematic IFFR programme Curtain Call, that offers an invitation to reflect upon the lure of science and obsession with progress through a series of films and an exhibition.

Curtain Call’s cinematic programme consists of four feature films and four compilations that further explore the overriding theme of loss and departure behind the shaping of our future. Titles of the features: Island, Alpha Go, ★ and Thomas Pesquet: How to Become an Astronaut. Compilation titles: Dreaming Androids, Fata Morgana, Reverse Engineering and Colonising Chaos. For the full Curtain Call film programme, see www.iffr.com

Artists represented in the Curtain Call exhibition: Nikolaus Geyerhalter, Takahiro Kudo, Paul van Hoeydonck, Chantal van Rijt, Valérie Mannaerts, Shaun Gladwell for BADFAITH, Robbrecht&Daem architects, Adrian Paci, Kurt D’Haeseleer & Franck Vigroux, Agence Future, Sarah van Sonsbeek, Yasunari Izaki, Various Artists.

The exhibition runs from Thu 25 Jan – Thu 1 Feb
Open daily from 11:00 – 20:00 – free entrance
Location: LP2
, Wilhelminakade 326

ABSTRACTS / BIO’s

JOHANN LURF
A conversation between Alejandro Bachmann (curator) and Johann Lurf about the filmmaker’s work ★ and it’s multiple narratives hidden in dark cinematic skies

ABSTRACT
The conversation will not only focuss on the formal concept and the found footage aspects of ★, but also about his collaboration with archives and questions of materiality. The question is also addressed to what extent ★creates an understanding of film history, that is, how it can be seen as an approach to archive and re-configure a human experience – which in this case is to look at the stars through cinema. Concentrating on the soundtrack of the film the discussion will also deal with tthe semantic cues ★offers in relation to what we connect with images of the stars.

BIO
Based in Vienna, Johann Lurf charts unexpected possibilities for cinematic perceptions of time and space. His films draw on the structural legacies of Michael Snow and Peter Kubelka and the recontexualizations of Bruce Connor and Peter Tscherkassky. The films are simultaneously playful and rigorous; technically ambitious and remarkably simple.

ALEJANDRO BACHMANN

BIO
Alejandro Bachmann is head of education, research and publications and curator af the Austrian Film Museum in Vienna. He writes both in scholarly publications and film magazines, his last publication as an editor includes „Spaces in Time: The Cinema of Nikolaus Geyrhalter“.

NATALIJA MAJSOVA
The Horizons of a Past Future: Spaceflight in Soviet Science Fiction Cinema and Beyond

ABSTRACT
The lecture traces the emergence, consolidation, and transformations of spaceflight-related ideas, such as utopianism, technological progress, patriotic aspirations of the State, and philosophical implications of the space age, through the genre of Soviet science fiction film. The significance of these developments is evaluated with reference to their influence on contemporary, post-Soviet cinema, science fiction, and future-oriented ideas.

BIO
Natalija Majsova got her PhD degree at Cultural Studies from the University of Ljubljana. Her monograph “The Constructor, Aesthetics, and the Cosmonaut: Outer Space in Contemporary Russian Cinema (2001-2017)” was published by the University of Ljubljana Press in 2017. She is currently a post-doc researcher at the University of Antwerp, where she examines the aesthetic legacy of Soviet science fiction cinema.

KURT VANHOUTTE

ABSTRACT
Since the early nineteenth century and into the twenty-first century, the planetarium – a theatre built for presenting educational and entertaining shows about astronomy – remained a locus of innovations in the contexts of both performance and science. These spectacles animated the celestial bodies – the stars, planets and comets – in front of lively audiences, and delivered cosmological narratives that thematised the place of man, scientific progress and technology within a rapidly evolving world.

BIO
Kurt Vanhoutte is Professor of Performance Studies and Visual Arts Criticism at the University of Antwerp, and since 2013 spokeperson for the Research Centre for Visual Poetics. He co-initiated the Performing Astronomy Research Society (PARS) an international, interdisciplinary group that investigates the history, present and future of popular astronomical spectacle.

CATH LE COUTEUR
Project Adrift: The hidden world of space junk

ABSTRACT
The project Adrift explores the secret world of space junk, making it personal, visible and audible. The project takes the form of an interactive experience (Adopt), a documentary film (Watch) and a sound installation (Listen).The presentation will also include the screening the two space-junk films ’SuitSat’, ‘Vanguard and Fengyun’ and the presentation of some of the sounds of the sound machine ‘Machine 9′.

BIO
Cath Le Couteur studied Directing at the National Film and Television School UK. Her short films won a number of awards and screened at key festivals around the world. She is a co-founder of Shooting People, the renowned online independent filmmakers collective. She currently sits on the board of Directors UK.

NEAL DAVID HARTMAN:
Communicating science through storytelling and artistic collaboration at CERN

ABSTRACT
Neal will expand on his workshop experiences with in science storytelling and virtual reality with such organisations as the Tribeca Film Institute, Lift Conference, and the GIFF. He will also elaborate on a documentary he is currently producing on CERN that was entirely shot by the engineering staff in the underground caverns, and that uses Kubrick’s 2001, A Space Odyssey as a major reference.

BIO
Neal is currently the director of the CineGlobe film festival at CERN, the European Particle Physics lab and home to the LHC, in Geneva, Switzerland. He was the invited chairman for the World VR Forum in 2017. Neal also occupies himself with the mechanical engineering of ultra-stable, low-mass structures and integration for the ATLAS Experiment at CERN.

LAWRENCE LEK
First-Person: Fictional Artists and Post-human Players

ABSTRACT
Who will the artists of the future be? When AIs attain superhuman levels of creativity, will we embrace or exile these non-human creators? Using his recent CGI film Geomancer and video essay Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), his talk will explore how video game engines enable artists to construct new narratives that both celebrate and critique technology. Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD) speculates on AI as a post-human creative force, drawing parallels between AI research and Chinese conceptions of labour.

BIO
Lawrence Lek is a simulation artist based in London. He creates site-specific virtual worlds and speculative films using gaming software, 3D animation, installation and performance to reflect on the impact of the virtual on our perception of reality. His work has been exhibited at Victoria and Albert Museum, The Barbican, and the ICA.

ANGELO VERMEULEN
Why we don’t need Star Wars. Re-imagining our interstellar future

ABSTRACT
Both film studios, business marketeers and media enterprises love to trigger our imagination about space exploration. The images they generate, however, are usually rather regressive than future-oriented. Combining science with a critical creative practice, Angelo Vermeulen demonstrates how a more diverse and multidisciplinary approach to futurist design can deliver us more relevant models to visualize our future.

BIO
Artist, biologist, space researcher and Senior TED fellow Angelo Vermeulen collaborates closely with practicing scientists, while also constructing multimedia installations in galleries and museums, and building communities through design and co-creation. In 2013 he was Crew Commander of the NASA-funded HI-SEAS Mars mission simulation in Hawaii. His space-related work led him to start PhD research at Delft University of Technology, working on bio-inspired concepts for interstellar travel.