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June 11, 2024
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MUTEK gathers all festival stakeholders for Future Festivals Summit

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Kicking-off the festivities of MUTEK’s 25th anniversary on Monday, August 19th, the Future Festivals Summit gathers more than 100 local and international festival stakeholdersorganizers, artists and audiences – in Montréal, Québec to explore innovative visions for the shaping of multidisciplinary arts and music festivals. The Summit presents the culmination of a years-worth of innovation around future-proofing festival-making practices by the Future Festivals think tank, a consortium of festivals from Québec and the rest of Canada, Mexico and Germany.

Transforming the Society for Arts and Technology into a temporary utopia, the Future Festivals Summit charts new pathways to establishing resilient festival futures. The opening keynote invites Drew Hemment, Director of Festival Futures at the Edinburgh Futures Institute, who proposes to think of Festivals as Labs, where extraordinary experiences can emerge to enable new ways of doing things.

From left to right, top to bottom: Bani Brusadin IT/ES, Cassie Thornton US/DE — The Hologram, Drew Hemment UK — Edinburgh Futures Institute, University of Edinburgh, Kamya Ramachandran IN/SG — BeFantastic, Mikellena Nettos CA/QC — The Climate Reality Project Canada, Mouna Andraos CA/QC — Daily tous les jours, Nancy Lee TW/CA — CURRENT, Chapel Sound, Renee Dumaresque CA — Crip Rave, Rilla Khaled CA/QC — Concordia University, San Farafina CA/QC — Club Sagacité, Stefana Fratila RO/CA — Crip Rave, Taylor McArthur CA/QC — Obx Labs

IMAGINING FESTIVAL FUTURES THROUGH INNOVATIVE FORMATS

Over the course of the day, host Mouna Andraos of Montréal-based studio Daily tous les jours accompanies festival stakeholders through three experiential sessions to collectively imagine technological, equitable, and sustainable festival futures. Each session is guided by the speculative work of boundary-pushing artists in conversation with the hands-on experience of festival-making experts. Calling upon all festival stakeholders, the sessions deploy innovative formats of audience interaction with the goal to bring brighter futures into the present.

Exploring our technological festival futures, the first session is guided by the performative intervention of Taiwanese-Canadian interdisciplinary media artist and curator Nancy Lee. Staged in the speculative world of OSMOSi: 422 Unprocessable Entity, Lee in conversation with guerilla festival-maker Bani Brusadin, founder of Barcelona’s The Influencers festival, and speculative game designer Rilla Khaled of Concordia University, helps us imagine festival futures that escape current technocapitalist trajectories.

Imagining The Festival of Zero Compromise, the second session is guided by artist and activist Cassie Thornton, who is inviting us into a “safe space” for the unknown, for disobedience, and for unanticipated collectivity. Exchanging with San Farafina, director of Club Sagacité, a creative space for underrepresented communities initiated by Moonshine, and Toronto-based Crip Rave™ collective, which prioritizes Crip, Disabled, Deaf, Mad and Sick body-minds, the session imagines festival futures, marked by increased accessibility, equity, and inclusivity.

Drawing upon Indigenous Futurisms, the last thematic session on sustainability is guided by multimedia artist Taylor McArthur of the Nakota First Nation, Saskatchewan. Rooting these futures in current social trajectories, the session invites into conversation Mikellena Nettos of The Climate Reality Project, and curator of Bangalore’s Future Fantastic: AI Art Festival for Climate Change, Kamya Ramachandran to imagine more sustainable and resilient festival futures.

Learn more about the activities

NETWORKING

Lunchtime networking, an extended coffee break featuring curated meet-the-expert sessions, and a closing cocktail hosted in collaboration with REFRAIN, present a multitude of opportunities for all festival stakeholders to connect and network.

The critical discussions sparked by the Future Festivals Summit expand into the activities of the MUTEK Forum unfolding throughout the rest of the week. Sessions on the art of curation, sustainable creative practices and the forward-looking role of festivals in cultivating temporary utopias are all set to broaden discussions and audiences.

TICKETS

Summit access is included in the MUTEK Forum Passport and the combined MUTEK Forum + Festival Passports. RSVP required. Passport holders will be contacted via email to RSVP.

Get your access

PARTNERS

The Future Festivals Summit is made possible by the support of the Government of Québec.

MUTEK acknowledges the support of the Canada Council for the Arts.

The Future Festivals think tank is lead by MUTEK (Montreal), New Now Festival (Essen, Germany), imagineNATIVE (Toronto), Mois Multi (Quebec City), send+receive (Winnipeg), New Forms (Vancouver), and MUTEK.MX (Mexico City).

Editorial partner HOLO magazine documented the work of the Future Festivals think tank in an evolving online dossier: Read the Field Guide

The Future Festivals Summit benefited from a programming retreat hosted by Mois Multi.

The closing cocktail is hosted in collaboration with the alliance of Québec festivals REFRAIN.


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