Second and last chapter of my report from the GAMERZ festival, one of the very few French festivals that doesn’t play it safe nor stiff with a programme that endorses the unexpected, a laid-back atmosphere, a few famous names but also an impressive line-up of fresh talents. Plus, it’s in Aix-en-Provence so as the French say “y’a pas photo!” (which means something like ‘it’s a no-brainer.’)

Spanning the abolitionist movement, early labor movements, women’s suffrage, the civil rights movement, and up to the present antiglobalization movement and beyond, A People’s Art History of the United States is a tool kit for today’s artists and activists to adapt past tactics to the present, utilizing art and media as a form of civil disobedience

This year’s edition of the GAMERZ festival not only demonstrated that there is nothing trivial about play but it also explored how our relationship to play has changed with the advances of technology. And, more interestingly, it invited us to join artists whose work investigates how the digital age is changing man, whether we’re talking about Huizinga’s homo ludens, the working man (Homo Faber) or more generally the modern man (Homo sapiens.)

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V12 Laraki is a perfect copy of a Mercedes-Benz 6.2L V12 engine. Except that each of its 465 components was handcrafted by Moroccan artisans who used 53 materials traditional to the country. The artist bought a Mercedes engine, his team disassembled it and faithfully replicated each piece using brass, marble, bone, mother of pearl, malachite, agate, precious woods, ammonite fossils, terracotta enamel, and other local materials. Then they assembled the engine using 660 casted copper bolts and the 465 exquisitely reproduced parts

Will tomorrow’s wars be dominated by autonomous drones, land robots and warriors wired into a cybernetic network which can read their thoughts? Will war be fought with greater or lesser humanity? Will it be played out in cyberspace and further afield in Low Earth Orbit? Or will it be fought more intensely still in the sprawling cities of the developing world, the grim black holes of social exclusion on our increasingly unequal planet? Will the Great Powers reinvent conflict between themselves or is war destined to become much ‘smaller’ both in terms of its actors and the beliefs for which they will be willing to kill?

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The exhibition presents eleven case studies spanning the period from the invention of ‘metric’ photography of crime scenes in the 19th century to the reconstruction of a drone attack in Pakistan in 2012 using digital and satellite technologies. These offer an analysis of the historical and geopolitical contexts in which the images appeared, as well as their purpose, production process and dissemination

The event is a one-day meeting for filmmakers, producers, artists, designers, entrepreneurs and anyone else interested in exploring how digital technologies and new forms of interactivity are shaping the future of documentary storytelling. The conference is one of the highlights of the Seamless Reality program set up by IDFA DocLab, a festival program for ‘undefined art and unexpected experiences’

A broad view on media piracy as well as comparative perspectives on recent issues and historical facts regarding piracy. The book contains a compilation of texts on grass-roots situations whose stories describe strategies developed to share, distribute and experience cultural content outside of the confines of local economies, politics or laws

A few days ago i popped by the The World Press Photo exhibition at the Royal Festival Hall in London. It’s a show i always look forward to visiting. The quality of the prints is often ridiculously low but the photos that win the photojournalism competition give me some time to reflect on the stories that made the news over these past few months but also to discovered under-discussed cultural or political issues

This exploration of visual protest since 9/11 isn’t constricted by boundaries nor hierarchies. Online interventions rub shoulders with good old posters, murals with performances, court sketches with design objects. The people who rebel, resist and visually express their opposition are famous artists such as Banksy and Ai Weiwei. More often than not, however, they are anonymous or operate behind pseudonyms

Annie Machon is an intelligence expert and author who worked for 6 years as an intel­li­gence officer for MI5, the UK domestic counter-intelligence and security agency. Together with her ex-partner, David Shayler, she resigned in the late 1990s to blow the whistle on the spies’ incom­pet­ence and crimes

A week or so ago, i was in Eindhoven for the Age of Wonderland festival and realized the city was in full Dutch Design Week swing. There was far far too much to see for someone like me who has only a mild interest in design. So i went for the blockbusters. One of them was the Graduation Show of the students from Design Academy Eindhoven.

The 56th Biennale is thus set against the backdrop of economic, ecological and humanitarian crises. Any kind of art or design event has to pretend you care for the state of the world these days (unless you’re at the Frieze art fair of course) but somehow this edition of the biennale demonstrates far more energy, determination and spirit in tackling the sufferings of our world than many much younger and openly socially-engaged events i’ve attended recently

I finally made it to the Venice Bienniale this week. I hadn’t set foot there for years. My number one preoccupation was to locate the Pavilion of the Indonesian Republic. It’s at the Arsenale, I had seen a photo of it. Some kind of rusty dinosaur with angels flying around it.

It turns out there was no dinosaur but a cross between the Trojan Horse and a Komodo dragon, a large species of lizard found in Indonesia

The piece is made of Exxon, Shell, BP, and Mobil oil cans, but overnight, the local gallery staff had them secretly changed to Petronas labels. Though this violates the contract, I decided to keep the piece in the show because of the strange situation this tampering creates–a nationally owned oil company rushing to put its logo on a piece of art that is highly critical of the oil industry and what it appropriates and extracts

Project Nimbus is the outcome of 5 years of collaborative research by artist and inventor Dave Lynch and Chemical Physicist & Laser Expert Mike Nix. Using off-the-shelf technology, the team built an experimental device that projects moving images onto clouds. Onto pretty much anything cloudy actually: clouds of course but also cooling towers or urban vents.

Project Nimbus is based on the zoopraxiscope developed by Eadweard Muybridge in 1879 and regarded as the first movie projector

Simon Farid is a visual artist interested in the relationship between administrative identity and the body it purports to codify and represent. In practice, this means that the artist is ‘squatting’ identities that have been constructed by other people for surveillance, marketing or institutional purposes and then discarded.

He notoriously ‘inhabited’ the identity of an undercover police officer and the one of a politician who moonlighted as a web marketing guru