In the nineteenth century the craftsman William Morris observed that “you can’t have art without resistance in the material.” While the implications of that proclamation may have been explicitly clear in an era of woodworking, they are a little more ambiguous in the age of machine learning and synthetic biology. ACT Festival is loosely organized around the theme of ‘Tektonics’ (from tektōn, the Ancient Greek noun for artisan/craftsman) and will revisit and rethink the principles of craft in light of emerging methods of ‘new making’ – across projects, practices, educational platforms and creative ecosystems. Three very special speakers open the festival’s conversation with an incisive survey of the present that acknowledges deep-seated creative impulses and motivations.


Zach Lieberman

Artist, researcher, and developer dedicated to exploring new modes of expression and play; co-founder of NYC’s School For Poetic Computation; co-founder and one of the lead developers of openFrameworks.


Régine Debatty

Blogger at the eclectic online publication We Make Money Not Art; curator and critic at large, interested in the intersection between art, design, science, and social issues.


Ryoji Ikeda

Renowned artist and Japan’s leading electronic composer; his expansive and breathtaking audiovisual installation test_pattern is featured in The Ground exhibition space.

Feature image: An array of Superstudio’s Quaderna 2600 dining tables accessorized with complementary humans. Co-designer Adolfo Natalini wrote in 1971 “…if design is merely an inducement to consume, then we must reject design.”