Adam Donovan & Katrin Hochschuh: Empaty Swarm

“Everywhere it is machines and machines are not alone.” This powerful statement from curator ZHANG Ga is at the heart of the upcoming sixth edition of Device_art festival and it’s large central exhibition Machines Are Not Alone. Rooted in the idea of new machinic ecology, the presented artworks reveal on many different complex levels this machinic nature of our reality: the poetry of our machinic surroundings, the machine that is ourselves, the machinic interconnectivity which determines our very existence.

The festival Device_art was launched 15 years ago as a project dealing with technological devices, machines and robotics in the domain of contemporary art. A lot of things have changed since our festival beginnings. New hardware, devices, gadgets, algorithms, and smart applications, Internet and the IoT; sectors and occupations that did not even exist before; all the phenomena that open up the issues of censorship, privacy, technocentrism, democracy in technology, finally of democracy at all. The complexity of the theme of technology in art and life has become truly vast, as is the number and quality of artists on the international scene engaged with this theme in fascinating ways: through large, complex projects, research verging on science fiction, futurist or dystopian visions, elaborated theoretical concepts that analyse and illuminate the relations between machine, man, society, politics and nature. Device_art 6.018: Machines are Not Alone presents precisely this international scene: in collaboration with curator ZHANG Ga, the 15th anniversary of the festival in 2018 / 2019 brings a different programme directed towards showcasing this field of contemporary art, and building upon the central exhibition that in its works, concept and theoretical background provides diverse answers and raises some new questions about the complex nature of the contemporary and the future.


Museum of contemporary art (Zagreb), Šira Gallery (Zagreb), Youth centre (Split), Museum of modern and contemporary art (Rijeka)