an ethnography of digital friction

The technologies and interfaces that influence our daily lives in the digital world often appear smooth, sleek and impermeable. Though technology promises a closer, more integrated world, we are witnessing an increasing level of ghettoisation caused by digital filters and personalised interfaces. Similar-minded people tend to keep company with one another, blocking out digital content which challenges them and causes friction. In artistic discourse, this absence of friction is described as “sleekness”. The warehouse festival addressed this discourse and the discomfort “sleekness” causes in order to illuminate our digital culture from various angles. How can we construct digital spaces differently? How can interfaces be “hacked”? How can resistance be integrated into apps whose inner workings are concealed from us? And how can we revive the utopian potential of the early net.art?
Based on these questions, the project staged seminars in Witten/Herdecke and Dortmund accompanied by screenings, discussions with artists, presentations and performances. Warehouse has also announced an open call for digital residency programmes targeted specifically at young artists. The central component of the project has been an online platform, on which academic and artistic texts, videos and web art has been posted every week between June and October 2017. Additional events took place in other European cities, such as Basel and London.

Curatorial team: Pujan Karambeigi, Shama Khanna (GB), Anneliese Ostertag, Tabea Rossol, Pierre Francis Schwarzer, Lukas Stolz
Artists and researchers: Dirk Baecker, Filipa César (ES), Shu Lea Cheang (TW), Samira Elagoz (FI), Gabriele Gramelsberger, Louis Henderson (GB), Martina Leeker, Christian Sievers, Mårten Spångberg (DK), Terra0

Additional Venues:

unternehmen Mitte, performance, Basel: 16.–17 Jun. 2017; Naming Rights, “Exploring Entropy”“, screening and publication, London: 29 Jul. 2017


  • 15 July, 2017 to 16 July, 2017: „Virtual Desires“ seminar - part II

    Universität Witten/Herdecke, Witten

  • 30 June, 2017 to 2 July, 2017: „Virtual Desires“ seminar - part I

    Universität Witten/Herdecke, Witten


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