Art Division
Excellence Award


Media performance
©Marcel·lí Antúnez Roca
Ultraorbism is an interactive distributed action between two networked con- nected spaces in two cities: Barcelona, Spain and Falmouth, United Kingdom. Both spaces are open-plan, with a backdrop of a large main screen in the centre and a subsidiary screen: the main screen acts as the central area for the story, and it is there where the consequences of the various interac- tive processes engaged in by those acting in both venues are shown; the small screen shows the details of these interactions.
The story is a linear interpretation of the first of the two books of True His- tories by Lucian of Samosata (a Syrian writer who lived in the first century AD): it is an impossible journey on which everything is invented, with references to the mythology and literature of the era. A journey is recounted with the overlapping of various levels of images, some of which are produced dynami- cally during the performance, and others come from the image bank: taken together, they make up the icon- ographic narrative. The music and lighting are also interactive and coin- cide with the story of the image.
Reason for Award
Ultraorbism is a media performance work created by applying the artist’s unique worldview to Lucian of Sa- mosata’s True Histories. The artist’s performances and animation, in which he combines his body with machinery, are internationally re- nowned, but the participation of i2CAT (a foundation that researches next-generation Internet) and a group of dancers gives this work a more theatrical quality. The work consists of two different perfor- mances held simultaneously in Barcelona, Spain and in Falmouth, United Kingdom, with interactive music and lighting linked to net- based video images. The drawings the artist makes on stage, and the actual, primal performance, in which he flippes over a stack of paintings as the story unfolded, are spectacu- lar. And the way he integrates the highly advanced visual environment with the dancers and audience in each venue in this festive and new experiment are deeply alluring. (ISHIDA Takashi)