Online Festival New Nature at HYBRID - Cutting Edge Canada

Online Festival for electronic sounds and new media art

11.03. – 14.03.2021

For free, upon registration:

In collaboration with MUTEK, Hellerau - European Centre for the Arts presents an online festival for international electronic sounds and new media artists. The festival focuses on artists who live in Canada, have worked there or are active in the MUTEK network.


Presentation of the initiative with keynote and artist talks as well as a selected film programme:


accessible Mar 11 to 31, 2021
Nobody Loves Me
by Farihah Zaman, Jeff Reichert   
High in Lake Titicaca in the Andes Mountains, a large and homely frog once thrived, a species endemic to altitude and cold water named Telmatobius culeus. But over-collecting for human consumption, pollution and predation by introduced species have devastated the Titicaca water frog — which has a hard enough life as is, given its resemblance to a certain human sexual organ and the many unflattering nicknames that has spawned. In 2016, 10,000 frogs died all at once, and it wasn’t the first mass die-off this critically endangered species has experienced.
In a time of rapidly dwindling global biodiversity, the animals that are earmarked for protection efforts are often those considered by humans to be the most adorable. But what happens to those many curious species under the sun that are just plain … ugly? Should only the cute survive?

Still Life
by Florian Fischer, Johannes Krell    
The video work reflects the relationship people have with their environment and questions the genre conventions of the classic nature documentary. The animals looking directly into the camera, which is usually forbidden in nature documentaries, is almost aimed at and the animal is established as a part of the recipient as well as their counterpart. What starts as a landscape and nature documentary turns into an experimental essay film that transcends genre boundaries, and thus undermines their predictable narratives. A hitherto familiar environment takes on strange characteristics and oscillates between stagnation and movement, realism and hypnosis, naturalness and artificiality.

by Lisa Jackson    
This otherworldly short film takes a deep dive into lichen, a species that confounds scientists to this day. Lichen offers us a look at this remarkable life form and asks what we might learn from it. Ancient and diverse, both an individual and a community, lichens can live in the most extreme environments, including outer space. This meditative film bridges science and philosophy, and the words of lichenologist Trevor Goward illuminate the terrain in poetic and thought-provoking ways.

by Lisa Rave    
Using various levels of imagery, the essay film Europium draws connections between Papua New Guinea’s colonial past and the planned excavation of raw materials from the Bismarck Sea. The film weaves a narrative around the rare earth element europium; named after the European continent, the material will be culled from the ocean floor to ensure brilliant color images on smartphone displays and other flat screens, and for its fluorescent property, which is used to guarantee the authenticity of euro bank notes. The film describes this seemingly mundane fact as a return and repetition of history, pointing in the process not only to the complexity of human culture, its economies and systems of exchange, but also exposing the invisible ghosts of the past as they appear in the modern objects of our lives.

Resiliencia Tlacuache (Opossum Resilience)
von Naomi Rincon Gallardo    
Opossum Resilience is inspired by a series of encounters and interviews with  Zapotec female land defender and lawyer Rosalinda Dionicio. This place-based fabulation grounded in the valley of Oaxaca, Mexico, bastardizes Mesoamerican myths around four figures: a Hill, an Agave, an Opossum and Lady Reed. Lady Reed is a mythical Mixtec character who helps the opossum to cut the agave leaves in order to get its sugary alcoholic sap. Opossum Resilience overlaps the time of creation with a contemporary socio-environmental conflict around the imposition of a mining project in an Indigenous Territory. It summons the powers of festivity and inebriation; and imagines an opossum providing an activist with the mythical powers to play dead and then revive.

A Demonstration
by Sasha Litvintseva, Beny Wagner   
A monster film without monsters. Inspired by the existence of taxonomies of monsters at the heart of Early Modern European science, the film explores and reinterprets a way of seeing the natural world that is almost impossible to imagine from today’s vantage point. Early Modern naturalists were guided by a logic in which scientific truths were discovered through visual analogy. The word “monster” comes from the Latin “monstrare”, meaning to show, to reveal, to demonstrate. A Demonstration picks up on these themes in a poetic exploration of the boundaries of sight and the metamorphosis of form.
Built on the initiative and ideas of the late Madame Suharto, Keong Emas (The Golden Snail) Theatre was inaugurated in 1984 as the first IMAX theatre in Indonesia. The building’s unique architecture references a popular fairy tale about a princess turned into a snail - but was also meant to promote a new source of protein, the Golden Apple snail, introduced to farmers in Indonesia around the same time. Moving between tiny and monumental, soft and solid, mythical and invasive, this graceful animal is taking on many forms, making its slow-paced way through the topography of IMAX cinema itself.

Daily live programme from 14.00 CET + repeat at 20.00 CET.
The virtual gallery, auditorium and listening room are available on-demand throughout the festival.
More info about registration here.

About new nature

New Nature is a series of encounters over the course of 2020 between contemporary artists, filmmakers, immersive and VR creators, technologists, and climate scientists from Canada, Germany, Mexico and the US. The project is an initiative by the Goethe-Institut Montreal, realized with the support of the Federal Foreign Office of Germany, in partnership with the National Film Board of Canada, Centre Phi, Milieux Institute at Concordia University, Museum of the Moving Image, Massive Science, XR HUB Bavaria, UnionDocs Center for Documentary Art and Retune - Creative Technology Platform.
To find out more visit: