Just got back from Manchester, UK where I attended some of the FutureSonic festival. Above is a picture of Steve Symons presenting at the first from Dorkbot Manchester where I also gave a talk about my work as well. Overall, Futuresonic seemed like a really lively festival this year – it’s 6th year.

Katherine Moriwaki showed a newly comissioned piece called “Everything Really Is Connected After All”, which consisted of “a flock of mobile devices that enabled emergent narratives to adapt to the proximity of other people around you while you roam the plazas and arcades of the Arndale Shopping Center in the center of town. The shopping centre is a ‘non-place’, a space that is unique but identical everywhere across the world. The stories are tales of everyday people encountered in this space. As a backdrop for desire, projection, and the acquisition of material objects, the Arndale and the experience of shopping is explored in order to locate and find experiences and concerns that bind us together in small and large ways.” The install worked really well as people got a chance to try the devices in the space.

(above) People using Moriwaki’s “Everything Really Is
Connected After All” piece-

Meanwhile, UK-based artist Graham Harwood also showed his “NetMonster” piece in the mall, a project that “seeks to uncover truths forgotten in the light reflected from the endless shop windows, in an ever-evolving ‘network image’ showing how the Arndale and Manchester city centre have risen from the ashes of the 1996 IRA bomb. Coinciding with the date Ian Paisley and Gerry Adams are scheduled to form an historic power-sharing government in Northern Ireland, Harwood revisits the legacy of the 1996 IRA bomb, which famously detonated just a few meters away from Manchester Arndale. Harwood’s NetMonster software searches the internet for thematic content, sniffing out links and connections, creating a living, composite image from images splintered around the worlds media.”

My full report from the festival can be read here.


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