Driving the Human is a catalyst for experimentation, shaping sustainable and collective futures that combine science, technology, and the arts in a transdisciplinary and collaborative approach.

From 2020 to 2023, the scientific and artistic collaboration Driving the Human develops and produces seven tangible prototypes responding to complex contemporary scenarios. The project is jointly led by four partner institutions – acatech – National Academy of Science and Engineering, Forecast, the Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design and ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe – and relies on the expert knowledge and skills of their combined networks. Together, these partners will work to enrich the various developments and outcomes of the initiative.

Over the course of three days, the festival combines different formats, interweaving live programming with pre-recorded segments, including panel discussions, film screenings, lectures, performances, talks, workshops and an activation program.

Broadcast to the world via a livestream, the Driving the Human Opening Festivalis organized and hosted by ZKM | Center for Art and Media Karlsruhe and Karlsruhe University of Arts and Design. The festival brings inspiring speakers and visionary voices to the fore, in search of the constructive frictions that define our contemporary moment.

From Friday, November 20, at 18:30 CET, until the evening of Sunday, November 22, the festival will be broadcast online on the Driving the Humanwebsite, the ZKM Livestream, and the HfG Graduation Studio platform. The audience will be invited to actively participate in the live discussion through the Telegram group and the Instagram account, connecting and collecting ideas and asking questions to the panelists and participants. Following a kick-off program on Friday evening, the programming over the course of the weekend is organized thematically, exploring topics such as (Non-)Human, Habitat, Economy, Technology, Knowledge and Access.

Friday, November 20

Jan Boelen (greeting), Melanie Bonajo (film screening), Alba Corral & Tutu (dj-set and visuals), Hans Ulrich Obrist (project presentation), Vivien Tauchmann (performance), Peter Weibel (greeting)

Saturday, November 21

Kim André Lange, Bio Design Lab of the HfG (workshop)

Section 1: (NON-)HUMAN
What is Human? Have we ever been human?
Joanna Bourke (discussion), Bogna Konior (discussion) Alexandra Pirici (lecture), Jenna Sutela (film screening), Cary Wolfe (discussion)

Section 2: HABITAT
Where do we live? Where can we land?
Frédérique Aït-Touati (discussion), Alexandre Monnin (discussion), Guillaume Pitron (discussion),  Julijonas Urbonas (performance, conversation), Gediminas & Nomeda Urbonas (lecture)

Section 3: ECONOMY
What is progress? How do we produce and exchange value?
Michel Bauwens (discussion), Jeremy Shaw (film screening), John Thackara (statement), Richard D. Wolff (discussion)

Sunday, November 22

Kim André Lange, Bio Design Lab of the HfG (workshop)

Can A.I. help to built up a more sustainable and collective future?
Denis ‘Jaromil’ Roio (discussion), Maximilian Ilse (discussion), Vivien Tauchmann (performance)

Section 5: KNOWLEDGE
Who is producing knowledge and for whom?
Indy Johar (discussion), Sarat Maharaj (discussion)

Section 6: ACCESS
Who has access to knowledge and participation?
Albert-Lazsló Barabasí (conversation), Claudia Chwalisz (discussion), Sasha Costanza-Chock (discussion), Karrabing Film Collective (film screening), Jonas Staal & Jan Fermon (project presentation), Isabelle Stengers (statement)

What is, then, urgent? How can Driving the Human do something about it?
Bruno Latour & Frédérique Aït-Touati (film screening), Jan Boelen (conclusion), Freo Majer (conclusion), Martina Schraudner (conclusion), Peter Weibel (conclusion)

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