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Culture Days will return September 20 – October 13, 2024.
Post-Humanum: a raucous theatrical funhouse
Date and time
This activity runs the duration of Culture Days.
Free, and accepts optional pay-what-you-may donations for admission.
Offered in Russian, Farsi, English, and French.
Offers closed captioning or subtitles.
Our modern life has been converted into a code - our consumer lives catalogued and cross-referenced into transferable and marketable data for sale... Have we humans become only an accumulation of information...data...to be uploaded and sold to the highest bidder? Do our physical experiences and emotions count only in the production of more data?
Our bodies, for some, have become extraneous sensory machines —“meat machines”— that are inefficient, break down and ultimately die. Those technologists are looking for ways to improve the “meat machine” by adding smart prosthetics. Some argue that we already experience the world through our prosthetic extensions. We don’t have to look far. Our smartphones are devices that enhance all our capabilities. But more are planned.
Transhumanists go even further. They’re looking to bypass the body completely by cryogenically preserving the brains until society has technologically achieved immortality. Death becomes a medical disease to be eradicated.
What becomes of our humanity once meshed so completely with prosthetics, algorithms and engineered bodies? A phantom humanity.
Post-Humanum looks at these questions through a non-narrative, non-linear lens, creating a series of interactive scenes along an immersive promenade. The online version offers a selection of scenes from the total piece. The livestream version will be a hybrid show combining pre-edited video and scenes broadcast live.
The content of the scenes mimic the random juxtapositions on all media platforms of news, ads, personal stories, scientific discoveries and self-help, accompanied by the attending range of emotions from love to outrage. The performance will paint a social snapshot of what it means to be alive today, tomorrow and possibly forever... while integrating a teen and adult public in various participatory activities, live and digital.
- For more info and to register collectifbus123nu.com
ARTISTIC INTENT: Collectif Büs123 is a performance-based collective of culturally diverse multi-disciplinary artists. Their artistic intent is to create and express innovative multi-layered hybrid experiences of presentation with imaginative daring in situational space.
Their unique brand of interdisciplinarity merges their separate approaches, insights, methods, and perspectives into a contemporary experience of living art. They become a convergent performative expression that frames, composes and liberates participative public engagement, shared in spaces anchored in human history.
Collectif Büs123 is a living algorithm that gathers and stimulates the unpredictability of transcultural artistic practices. They are players of tragic-comic happenings in this era of uncertainty. Their aim is to reflect and challenge the biases of media and the digitalised chaos of communication proliferating in our topsy-turvy world.
HISTORY OF THE COLLECTIVE:
Collectif Büs123's beginnings were in the 1990s in the age of television. The first eponymous piece created by this group of artist friends was as an indictment of the monopoly of that technology and the way it represented reality on screen. Twenty years later, the same members of the group joined again. There is a conviviality to the foundation of the collective that persists to this day and demonstrates its openness to each member’s reality. Now propelled into the age of the internet, the group decided to examine the state of the digital and virtual worlds and their impact on our lives.
The result of that research was Babelle et Barbarie, a full multimedia theatrical piece presented at the Winchester St. Theatre in Toronto in 2015. The collective followed it up with the third phase of this project on the same themes. Titled Babel-o-drome, it's a series of interactive interior and exterior site-specific immersive promenade performances in collaboration with Christine Duncan's Element improvising choir and a participating multi-generational public.
The piece was presented outside on the grounds of Wychwood Barns in Toronto in the summer of 2018, inside the Rialto Theatre as part of the Phénomena festival in October 2018 in Montréal and in the form of excerpts during Culture Days 2018. It was presented outside in 2019 on the grounds of the Museum of Steam and Tech during the Hamilton Fringe festival.
Following pandemic measures, the collective turned to online shows. Babel-o-drome NUGEN 1 and 2 were born - videos recorded live through zoom then edited for the digital screens. They were broadcast in Toronto at the virtual Fringe 2020, as well as at Culture Days 2020 and at the Videoformes festival 2021 (France).