2024 Tribeca Festival immersive lineup
(Tribeca Festival)

The 2024 Tribeca Festival announced its immersive lineup of digital artists, presented in partnership with Mercer Labs and Co-Founder, artist Roy Nachum. Now in its 13th year, Tribeca Festival’s immersive exhibition runs June 6-17 at Mercer Labs, the newly-opened museum of art and technology, at 21 Dey Street in lower Manhattan.

“At Tribeca, we’ve transformed our immersive offerings to meet the growing demand for expansive experiences,” said Tribeca Co-Founder and CEO Jane Rosenthal. “As artists transition from digital platforms to live audiences, we’ve embraced the opportunity to explore new avenues in immersive programming. Our curated showcase, in collaboration with Mercer Labs, features exclusive works from renowned artists across diverse disciplines. This marks a significant milestone in festival history and continues Tribeca’s commitment to innovation, creativity and technology.”

As Mercer Labs first guest-curated exhibition, Tribeca Festival’s program offers a collective experience of visual and sonic artworks, specifically curated for the unique architecture and state of the art technology of the space. From June 6-17, eight exclusive large-scale immersive artworks from six artists – Memo Akten, Wen-Yee Hsieh, ScanLAB Projects, Robertina Šebjanič, Liam Young, and Sutu – will rotate in Mercer Labs’ bespoke exhibition spaces in three presentations: Body In The World, Redesigning Tomorrow, and Far From Nature. Each piece represents a distinct creative style, originating from artists whose expertise spans architecture, film, animation, sculpture, theater, dance, music, and audio.

“Never before has an immersive program at a festival undertaken such an endeavor to create multiple exclusive works at this scale and format,” said Tribeca Immersive Curator Ana Brzezińska. “This year, our program is a response to the reality that constantly prompts us to reflect on our relationship with society, technology, the natural environment, and individual life experiences.”

“The function of art is to see the world with new eyes; to motivate our community to consistently challenge and reinvent the world around us,” said Mercer Labs Co-Founder and Artist, Roy Nachum. “Mercer Labs gives life back to the Museum experience, continuing the story and creating a new cycle.”

The immersive program will be accompanied by a series of free artist talks and events at the Tribeca Festival hub at Spring Studios from June 6-8. Tribeca will also host the pilot edition of The Circle, a new incubator program designed to support top future digital talent through a network of industry associates including Accenture Song, ArtScience Museum Singapore, Cosm, EY Metaverse Labs, Google, Meta, MIT Open Documentary Lab, ONX Onassis Studio, PHI Center, Runway ML, ZeroSpace and more.


Memo Akten, Embodied Simulation

Embodied Simulation is a multiscreen video and sound installation that aims to provoke and nurture strong connections to the global ecosystems of which we are a part. The work combines artificial intelligence with dance and research from neuroscience to create an immersive, embodied experience, extending the viewer’s bodily perception beyond the skin, and into the environment

Memo Akten is a multi-disciplinary artist, musician, and researcher investigating the intricacies of human-machine entanglements. His work explores perception and states of consciousness, and the tensions between ecology, technology, science and spirituality. He writes code and uses algorithmic / data-driven design and aesthetics to create moving images, sounds, large-scale responsive installations and performances. He holds a PhD from Goldsmiths University of London, specializing in artistic and creative applications of Artificial Intelligence, and he is currently Assistant Professor at UC San Diego. Akten has received numerous awards including the Prix Ars Electronica Golden Nica.

Wen-Yee Hsieh, The Great Filter

The issue of identity between oneself and the environment has been interpreted as a world of its own. Catastrophes in the human world are translated into a sense of detachment between the self and the larger environment (from individual to collective, and beyond). It is the detachment from the real world that gives birth to a parallel imaginary space. However, when the real world permeates into this parallel world, conflicts arise.

Wen-Yee Hsieh is a Taiwanese artist who poses questions through digital graphics, photography, architecture design, and performing arts. His first VR experience, Limbotopia in VR, co-created with Chun-Lien Cheng, won the 2022 Anifilm International Festival Best VR Film Award and was nominated at the 2022 TRIBECA Festival and the 2021 Kaohsiung Film Festival.

Wen-Yee Hsieh, Invisible Them

For Invisible Them, the collective subconscious is spread out like a field of thoughts, preserved within the hallucinatory garden. Traversing the corridor of what constitutes the prototype hallucinatory garden, exploring the essence of collective violence, behavior, and fallacies. At the center lies an empty tomb; the niches on the wall are where consciousness is collected before it disperses, ultimately returning to the universe as energy.

ScanLAB Projects, FRAMERATE: Rhythms Around Us

FRAMERATE: Rhythms Around Us bears witness to the flux of life on earth. Surrounded by shifting point cloud landscapes, submerged in sound, we scale our perspective. Together we see the beautiful, creative, and destructive forces of nature and humanity. We are a part of this rhythm, we contribute to the cacophony, we are in sync, and we catastrophically collide with the beating pulse of our planet.

ScanLAB Projects is a pioneering creative practice. They digitize the world using LiDAR, a form of machine vision they believe is the future of Cinematography. They use their craft as a way to bear witness to the world – collaborating with artists, performers, and scientists on evocative, meaningful stories.

Robertina Šebjanič, CO_SONIC 38,144 km² (spatialized in 4DSOUND with MONOM)

In CO_SONIC 38,144 km², a poetic reflection and AI-powered sound landscape, artist Robertina Šebjanič explores the story of the coexistence of species and life forms through an observation of a river as one entity. The 4DSOUND adaptation for Tribeca Festival integrates the sounds of the Hudson River and bustling New York streets, blending them with the sonic presence of the more-than-human voices of natural and AI-generated entities from the Ljubljanica River and the Atlantic Ocean.

Robertina Šebjanič is an artist/researcher whose work explores the biological, (geo)political, cultural realities of aquatic environments and the impact of human activity on other organisms. She exhibited and performed at festivals and galleries worldwide including Ars Electronica, ZKM, KIKK Festival, Matadero, La Gaîté Lyrique, Le Cube, and was awarded at Prix Ars Electronica, Starts Prize, Falling Walls, Re: Humanism a.o.

Sutu, While We Wait

Within the ethereal confines of virtual realms, While We Wait delves into the paradoxical dynamics of modern connectivity. Amidst a backdrop of global pandemics, war or other physical world stressors, seeking solace as virtual avatars in digital communion, has become a necessary psychological outlet for many of us. Through vibrant hues and serene landscapes, the piece invites contemplation on the omnipresent chaos of real life and the promise of consolation in virtual spaces.

Sutu is an Australian digital artist and XR specialist who combines art and technology in new ways to tell immersive stories. His art explores themes surrounding the future of digital technology and culture, virtual identity and memory. He holds an Honorary Doctorate in Digital Media.

Liam Young, The Great Endeavour

To reach current climate targets, we must develop the capacity to remove existing carbon from the atmosphere at gigatonne scales. The Great Endeavour is to capture all this carbon and will involve the largest construction project in human history. In collaboration with a network of scientists and technologists, The Great Endeavour chronicles the design, construction, and drama of what will become this generation’s moon landing, our last great act of planetary transformation.

Liam Young is a designer, director and BAFTA nominated producer who is described by the BBC as ‘the man designing our futures’. His visionary films and speculative world designs for the entertainment industry are both extraordinary images of tomorrow and urgent examinations of the environmental questions facing us today.

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