Over the weekend of 23-26th Feb – the Capsule team took a trip to Amsterdam to explore Sonic Acts Festival. Since the first edition in 1994, over the years it has established itself as a thematic festival with a strong focus on contemporary and historical developments at the intersections of art, science, music and technology.
Each festival edition explores the chosen theme by means of an international conference, a wide range of concerts and performances, exhibitions and screenings, and embraces a broad spectrum of fields, practices and disciplines.
This year’s theme was ‘The Noise of Being’.
Arriving a day late to the party on Friday (due to Doris day) we wondered through an abstract dystopian world of exhibits and sound art installations in the stunning setting of the Stedelijk Museum. From glitchy Electronica, to a Microtonal Tuba ensemble with an incredible performance from Jennifer Walshe and the Arditti Quartet in between (a particular highlight), our senses were not just tingled but tossed, turned and tangled in the most invigorating way.
Our evening ended with some VR, AV, DJ madness in the beautiful converted church building, Paradiso – concert hall, cultural centre and club.
Across the rest of the weekend we visited Flemish Arts Centre De Brakke Grond for seminars combining modern scientific research and contemporary art forms and admired the work of emerging new artists at Arti et Amicitiae.
Other photography exhibits we saw outside of the festival was the evocative collection of Ed van der Elsken and the alluring ‘An ode to slowness’ by Tom Callemin. We also got lost in the vast Rijksmuseum for a few hours.
We had a blast in Amsterdam and think you should definitely check out Sonic Acts Festival if you get the chance next year. Now, our brains need a quick cat nap before we continue on with Supersonic Festival proceedings…