BERLIN, GERMANY.-The motto of transmediale.07 unfinish! is simultaneously battle cry and the curse of working with digital media that knows no conclusion, but only consecutive versions. But beyond the inherent drama of being eternally open-ended, unfinish! highlights the possibility of continuous transformation and advancement. Under the motto unfinish! transmediale.07 investigates artistic processes that are open to change.
Media artist Stelarc (aka Stelios Arcadiou), born in Cyprus and today living in Australia, presents his current project 'The Extra Ear'. Since the 80s Stelarc explores possibilities of technical improvement of his own body. Recently a third ear, a prosthesis grown out of human tissue, has surgically been implanted on his arm. In his multimedia presentation-demonstration Stelarc describes how he compensates for the imperfection of his own body by equipping it with technology. Prostheses are not a sign of a physical malfunction, but rather a symbol for an additional feature (Keynote 'Fractal Flesh', 1.2., 20.30 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio). The conference-panel 'Unfinishing Creation' examines how the applied sciences offer new tools for artists in order to expand their own disciplines. Berlin art historian Ingeborg Reichle (Art from the Laboratory) and New York neurobiologist Warren Neidich, who lives as an artist in Berlin, discuss, amongst others, how new media alter the human perceptual apparatus (1.2., 15 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio).
On June 4, 2005, Liu Wei walked with his camera to Peking University and the Tian'anmen Square and asked by-passers about this date, the anniversary of the massacre in 1989 of protesting students by the Chinese military. His video 'A Day to Remember' gives proof of the power of media in two ways: the new generation of students dont know anything about the events, because they do not exist in mass media or, facing the camera, they keep silent. (transmediale Award 2007/Honourable Mention; Video programme 'Chronic Recollection', 1.2., 18 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio II and 2.2., 20 hrs, Babylon:Mitte).
The video Yet Another Shot by Kinda Hassan is a description of the condition of social and mediated perception. On the day of the murder of Jubran Tueiny, Lebanese parliamentarian and journalist, she filmed 'Yet Another Shot': TV journalists report in an overly-experienced and almost bored manner from the actual explosion site and, at the same time, are trying to communicate the event as a drama (Video programme 'Reality For TV', 31.1., 18 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio II and 1.2., 19.30 hrs, Babylon:Mitte).
Media theorist Friedrich Kittler will address transmediales topic Unfinishing. Kittler, author of 'Grammophon Film Typewriter', holds the chair for aesthetics and history of media at the Humboldt University Berlin. In his lecture he asks for the meaning of reversibility and infinite loop-d-loop which is being re-processed, after its execution as long as this is not prevented by external influences (Keynote 'The Finality of Algorithms', 3.2., 18 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio).
Urban development is a subject of continuous change. While countries with traditional industrialisation are dealing with the phenomenon of shrinking cities, the increasing megalopolises in Latin America, Asia and Africa are in a process of immense growth. The urbanist and Africa specialist AbdouMaliq Simone and Istanbul-based urban researcher and author Orhan Esen understand a permanently unfinished city not as a form of regression, but as a potential. They discuss their positions in the conference-panel 'Unfinished Cities' (2.2., 15 hrs, Akademie Hanseatenweg, Studio).