The New Infinity
New art for planetariums
Elaborating on my work Sonic Sculpture, I advised Berliner Festspiele about developing the 3D-audio system for The New Infinity. The challenge was to set up a spatial sound system under the aspects of limited space and the acoustic properties of the full-dome screen. During the production, I worked as a sound scenographer alongside the artists. With over ten thousand visitors a month, The New Infinity was very well received.
Recent developments in the digital world are presenting the analogue era’s infrastructures with new challenges. And this also applies to planetariums, which have served as gateways into the infinity of starry skies, and thus, a space for unbounded, communal experiences of immersion, for a hundred years. In combination with digital technology and mobile architecture, the planetarium can enable new experiences, create new communities and facilitate events, also for an audience that the arts often find hard to reach. Itself a globally prevalent kind of hardware, the planetarium is an ideal device to democratise and spread experiences of technology and contemporary art. It allows for a very timely form of global simultaneity.
In their programme series “The New Infinity”, Berliner Festspiele and Planetarium Hamburg will present new artistic fulldome productions from the autumn of 2018. Fulldome describes the technically maximum image impression of our time, to be shared and experienced as a group. Planetarium Hamburg is one of the leading institutions of its kind. It has the highest numbers of visitors in the German-speaking region and is an important protagonist within the International Planetarium Society. The planetarium would like to continue along the path of opening itself to artistic content and propagating it via its network. With its state-of-the-art technical equipment, it holds undreamed-of potential for immersive encounters.
For “The New Infinity”, we would like to place the Planetarium’s Kuppelsaal (domed hall) at the disposal of artists as a space of facilitation, where they can use digital audio and video equipment to attempt something that humankind has tried through the ages and various states of development: to create moments of unboundedness and intimations of something that transcends the boundaries of our perception – infinity. From 2018 to 2020, we will invite visual artists, sound artists, film makers and game developers to develop new artistic works for the Kuppelsaal. The series will be launched as part of Berlin Art Week on 26 September 2018 with a mobile dome located on Mariannenplatz, featuring new works by David OReilly, Holly Herndon & Mathew Dryhurst and Fatima Al Qadiri & Transforma as well as a closing night concert with William Basinski, Evelina Domnitch & Dmitry Gelfand. Following this premiere, the works will be presented at Planetarium Hamburg and in various planetariums across the US as part of the Germany Year 2018/19.