On September 5, 2018, The Second Beijing Media Art Biennale (BMAB) is to return on schedule. If the theme of “Ethics of Technology” for the last BMAB presented what we contemplate and introspect at the epistemological level under the New Theology of Technology, the topic of “Post-Life” for this year will discuss not only at the epistemological level, but also let us realize that “New Technology” will prompt us to rethink our relationship with other species, and whether we have the courage to decentralize “human” as the scale for everything.
Another core part of this Biennale is “Art and Technology” Lab Space Exhibition. It aims to build a platform where artistic creation and cutting-edge science and technology research can exchange ideas and cooperate. It will also introduce research topics and practices by interdisciplinary laboratories around the world that related to the theme of “Post-Life”, and present experiment achievements on future life that created by interdisciplinary cooperation.
The 2018 Beijing Media Art Biennale (BMAB2018) will be held at the CAFA Art Museum from September 5 to September 24, 2018. It is supported by China National Art Fund, hosted by Central Academy of Fine Arts and organized by the School of Design of CAFA, the School of Experimental Art of CAFA, and CAFA Art Museum. As an international academic platform for promoting art and technology’s cross experiments, this Biennale centers on the theme of “Post-Life” and consists of six sections, including thematic exhibition, lab space, hyperlinks exhibition, live performance, thematic forum and workshops. It will offer a concentrative presentation of artists’ interdisciplinary experiments in the field of art and technology, and stimulate in-depth discussions between artists, designers, scientists and theorists.
“Post-Life” Thematic Exhibition
The theme of the exhibition is “Post-Life”, and it focuses on exploring how the ancient concept of “life” has developed and extended under the influence of the rapid development of biological genes, artificial intelligence, robots, and in the context of post-anthropological theories that has increasingly attracted attention. It also discusses the subtle changes of human’s position from the perspective of “non-anthropocentrism” when they coexist with other species on earth. The main exhibition is divided into three parts: “Data Life”, “Mechanical life” and “Synthetic life” , trying to interpret the subject of life from different perspectives: virtual life brought into existence by computer algorithm, bionic life created by machinery and synthetic life that is hard to define by the definition of life. The exhibiting works include videos, interactive installations, immersive art, biological art, mechanical installations, audio-visual art, internet art, sound art, mixed media, and so on.
“Art and Technology” Lab Space
The interdisciplinary laboratory of art and technology has already become a new model for future innovation. It not only changes the research and development models in scientific and technological circles but also offers a new pattern for the artists who have long based on studios. The “Art and Technology” Lab Space invites many representative domestic and foreign laboratories, such as MIT Media Lab, to present their ideas, practices and methods along with their research findings and artworks related to the theme of “Post-Life”. The exhibits include R&D prototypes, work prototype, demo videos, technical demos, literature and publications. The Lab Space employs exhibitions, workshops and roundtable talks to exchange practical experience and catalyze cross-field art collaboration. In addition, the exhibition especially showcases traditional Chinese folk art and scientific and technological achievement projects, trying to expand the historical dimension of art and technology.
As part of the Biennale, live performances for the public will be hosted at CAFA Art Museum and CHAO Art Center.
After the main exhibition and the forum finished, an exhibition tour based on the same or related topics will be held in Beijing and other places.