Daniel Aschwanden (†) and Lucie Strecker

Deep Dreaming Creatures

Handle with Care in memory of Daniel Aschwanden

Universität für Angewandte Kunst Wien, Kleiner Lichthof
Performance / Installation
{machine learning} {mimesis} {hybridity}

The performative installation Deep Dreaming Creatures explores moments in which human and non-human bodies and aspects – i.e., animals, plants, and machines – touch or blend into one another. The physical imitation of movement patterns in biology and of visible vocabularies in design and architecture open the dialogue with artificial intelligence.

Daniel Aschwanden’s unfinished work on Deep Dreaming Creatures will be brought on stage posthumously, and in memory of him, by Lucie Strecker in collaboration with a trans-disciplinary team.

, © Justine Parson

Daniel Aschwanden & Lucie Strecker – Deep Dreaming Creatures

Nature is not something to be taken for granted. Neither is culture. Both terms are vague and can only be grasped in reference to each other and their environments. What we encounter all the time, on the other hand, are zones of transition, of overlapping, of transformation. It is these zones that Daniel Aschwanden and Lucie Strecker examined by designing a movement experiment based on machine learning: A neural network is taught the ways in which organisms transform into hybrids by imitating movement routines. Later, the learning algorithm is believed to be able to make proposals for new movement routines that might lead to unknown hybridisations.

          Daniel Aschwanden (21 January 1959–08 July 2021)was a Swiss performer, choreographer, director, and curator who lived and worked in Vienna. He co-founded Tanzsprache, the first festival for Vienna’s independent art scene. As part of the group Bilderwerfer, he worked with dancers with and without special needs; the collective received the Austrian Federal Art Ministry’s State Award for innovative and trend-setting work in this field. In the years after that, his professional focus shifted towards matters of (performing) art in public spaces featuring participatory approaches, but also questions concerning the role of art in urban development processes. At the University of Applied Art, Aschwanden helped shape a discipline called ‘social design – art as urban innovation’, designed the field of performance in the department of art and communicative practice and most recently provided essential input to the development of the Angewandte Performance Lab (APL). To acknowledge his merits over many decades, the City Councillor for Culture nominated him to receive the City of Vienna’ Medal of Honour. However, the ceremony could not take place due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

On July 8th 2021, Daniel Aschwanden passed away much too soon. For decades, he has shaped Vienna’s independent art scene, including the programme of brut. We owe him for his vision, his energy, his impulses. His last project Deep Dreaming Creatures, on which he worked with Lucie Strecker, remains unfinished. It will be posthumously presented in memory of Daniel Aschwanden as part of brut’s Handle with Care series.

Lucie Strecker does artistic research in the field of hybrid art. From 2016 to 2020, she headed the Elise Richter PEEK project The Performative Biofact. In 2015, her co-operation with Klaus Spiess received an Honorary Mention by Ars Electronica. The couple presented their works on an international level. Since 2018, Lucie Strecker has shown her performative installations in contexts such as the Vienna Biennale, the Vienna Design Week, the Impulse Festival, Künstlerhaus Wien and Haus der Kulturen der Welt Berlin and has been an ‘artist-in-lab’ at Swiss art university ZHdK. In 2020, she published a special edition of Performance Research entitled ‘On Microperformativity’ with media scholar Jens Hauser, which was complemented by an exhibition she co-curated in 2021 at Magazin 4 in Bregenz. Since 2020, Lucie Strecker has been working as a Senior Artist at Angewandte Performance Lab, of which Daniel Aschwanden was also a member.


Artistic lead, concept and performance Daniel AschwandenConcept and performance Lucie Strecker Text and media design Vera Sebert Programming and AI conceptmlaxr Installation Lukas Allner and Daniela Kröhnert Dramaturge and choreographic coach Philippe Riéra Sound and media technologyStefano D’Alessio Media theorJens Hauser Systems biology consultantDavid Berry

A co-production by Verein CHIMERA für Cybertanz und Performance and brut Wien. With the kind support of the City of Vienna’s Department of Cultural Affairs, the Federal Ministry of Arts, Culture, Civil Service and Sport and the University of Applied Art Vienna as well as the FWF’s PEEK project Conceptual Joining.

Dates & Tickets

October 2021

Thu. 07.10.2021, 20:00
Pay as you wish. Bitte anmelden über den Ticket-Button.

Universität für Angewandte Kunst Wien, Kleiner Lichthof
Oskar-Kokoschka-Platz 2, 1010 Wien

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