Lectures by Leading experts in their field
To give the audience an overall impression of the organisation and themes within the festival MASTERING PERCEPTION, we had a series of fantastic lectures.
In order to keep the festival MASTERING PERCEPTION an ongoing platform for research, connection and new ideas, we have now created an exchange of knowledge through workshops, lectures and seminars throughout the year. We are proud to present our current collaborators. Sign up for our newsletter and be the first to receive information on our lectures with leading experts in their field. Tickets are for free, donations welcome. [find out more about what happens with your donations]
Our collaborators and lecturers are at the intersection of animation, speculative biology, zoology, art, technology and future research.
Andy Serkis Facial Capture in Dawn Of The Planet Of the Apes
"Motion capture (mocap) is sampling and recording motion of humans, animals, and inanimate objects as 3D data. The data can be used to study motion or to give an illusion of life to 3D computer models. Since most mocap applications today require special equipment there are still a limited number of companies, schools, and organizations that are utilizing mocap technology. Outside the film industry, army, and medicine, there are not too many people who know what mocap is. However, most people, even small children, have seen the films, games, and TV commercials for which mocap technology is used. In that sense mocap is in our everyday life." (Kitagawa and Windsor, 2008, p. 1)
An insight into the beginnings of Motion Capture by Kitagawa and Windsor!
The Animal Communicator Anna Breytenbach
What if you could talk to animals and have them talk back to you?
Anna Breytenbach has dedicated her life to what she calls interspecies communication. She sends detailed messages to animals through pictures and thoughts. She then receives messages of remarkable clarity back from the animals.
One of our honorary guests was the Animal Communicator Anna Breytenbach. Find out more about her important work.
Robert Bakker’s athletic dinosaurs became the model for paleoart
Robert Bakker will tell us about the secret life of the dinosaurs and how his writing and his illustrations have had a huge impact on how we think about and picture these prehistoric animals!
Tune in and listen to the podcast "Welcome to Jurassic Art"
Simon Russell Beale in The Tempest
After their success in mixing Motion Capture and real-time live theatre in 2016 with the Production THE TEMPEST, the Royal Shakespeare Company became one of the many partners of MASTERING PERCETION.
Sarah Ellis, Director of Digital Development at the RSC, said: “Together we were able to push the boundaries of theatre, with live performance capture and facial real-time motion capture on stage for the very first time. And in the process, the experience reached people in 124 countries around the world, as well as 136,000 audience members in Stratford and at the Barbican. This new research shows how using a partnership model to invest in collaborative R&D can also catalyse wider organisational innovation.”
The crew of The Imaginarium Studios and the Cast and Team of the Royal Shakespeare Company will give insights into how arts and technology come together.
Motion capture, movement sciences and dance
Learn about how movement sciences, Motion Capture and dance are closely interrelated. A performance lecture by artistic director Zandile Darko herself.
Team members of Optitrack will guide and explain the magic world behind animation.
Archeology and art - Choreographer Particia Apergi with visual artist Hikaru Fujii
Fujii and Apergi will give us an insight into their collaboration in 2018 where archeology, history and art enabled a new way of production.
Together they produced an artwork related to the ancient Greek mass grave of 80 captives found at the outskirts of ATHENS which seemed to be executed during the period that preceded the Democracy.
The reenactment of the execution by a chorus of young Athenians was made possible by a close collaboration with archaeologists, dentists and others who were in charge of the excavation. This production is a milestone in interdisciplinary collaboration and what it can make possible.
Find out more
Zoologist who pioneered comparative animal biomechanics.
Robert McNeill Alexander was a British zoologist and a leading authority in the field of animal biomechanics. He was a pioneer in researching the gait of various animals in relationship to the anatomy of skeletons and muscles
McNeill Alexander died in 2016. We have a brilliant online lecture in which he explains animals biomechanics.
The all-round visual Artist Nandipha Mntambo, who was trained as a sculptor, will talk about:
- animal-human relation
- her studies in forensic pathology
- her work in cowhide
- and The Minotaur as a recurring mythological character in her work.
Are We Smart Enough To Know How Smart Animals Are?
Did you know that elephants classify humans by gender and language and that there is a young male chimpanzee at Kyoto University whose flaws memory puts that of humans to shame?
In this entertaining lecture Dutch primatologist and ethologist Frans de Waal will give us insights into a world which we share with incredible creatures.
A lecture performance by BQF: "Black Quantum Futurism is a new approach to living and experiencing reality by way of the manipulation of space-time in order to see into possible futures, and/or collapse space-time into a desired future in order to bring about that future’s reality. This vision and practice derives its facets, tenets, and qualities from quantum physics and Black/African cultural traditions of consciousness, time, and space. Under a BQF intersectional time orientation, the past and future are not cut off from the present - both dimensions have influence over the whole of our lives, who we are and who we become at any particular point in space-time."
Have we sparked your interest?
This is where you can browse and learn more of the research behind the festival. The information was carefully selected and curated by our artistic director Zandile Darko.
"In order to identify starting points, we decided to focus on three exercises: humming for a plant at 220 hz, blinking in slow motion at a cat, and using light to interact with bacteria called staphylococcus homini often found living in armpits. This is because we wanted to work on different scales as well as with different groups of species. We based our designs on scientific research in order to move beyond subjective experiences. This is not to say that either rules out the other, but that the project is not about us as individuals. It should also be noted that within this field of research, similarly to many others, there are conflicting views, for example, in terms of the percentage of microbes in a human body."
Excerpts from interdisciplinary artist, writer, and curator Coco Fusco's Observations of Predation in Humans: A Lecture by Dr. Zira, Animal Psychologist (2013)
Thomas Thwaites' converted himself into a goat for three days, earning him the 2016 Ig Nobel Prize of Biology.
Life and death. Animal and Human | Nandipha Mntambo | TEDxCapeTownWomen (2019)
“My work is a space where myth and reality collide. It is a space where the line of what is attractive and what is repulsive intersects ” Nandipha Mntambo’s
Interview ‘Coco Fusco - The Art of Decolonization’ (2017)
"Nick Cave creates "Soundsuits"—surreally majestic objects blending fashion and sculpture—that originated as metaphorical suits of armor in response to the Rodney King beatings and have evolved into vehicles for empowerment. Fully concealing the body, the “Soundsuits” serve as an alien second skin that obscures race, gender, and class, allowing viewers to look without bias towards the wearer’s identity. Cave regularly performs in the sculptures himself, dancing either before the public or for the camera, activating their full potential as costume, musical instrument, and living icon. The artist also works with choreographers, dancers, and amateur performers to produce lavish community celebrations in untraditional venues for art. Cave’s sculptures also include non-figurative assemblages, intricate accumulations of found objects that project out from the wall, and installations enveloping entire rooms."
Nick Cave: Thick Skin | Art21 ‘Extended Play’ (2016)
"Thirty ornate horses, operated by Alvin Ailey dancers, filled Grand Central Terminalin a performance conceived by the artist Nick Cave"
Galloping in Grand Central Station - New York City 2013 (2013). The New York Times.