Text by CLOT Magazine
Unsound Festival have just announced the new theme for the 2021 edition, plus a call for entries from artists, writers, theorists and activists in response to the theme: Dəəp Authentic. The pandemic has left us isolated and atomised, yet also more virtually connected than ever. Relationships, money, art and governance are contained inside our laptops and on digital tokens. Social bubbles spawn speculative ones and vice versa. As parts of the world begin to transition into a new phase, in which many are vaccinated, our year-plus-long immersion in virtual living raises new questions – the Unsound team challenges.
The theme of Unsound 2021 is the response to a hyperreal situation. dəəp authentic also refers to the gradual shift back from online to IRL events. This phrase involves a questionable binary—for the online world is also ‘real’, and the IRL has long been digitised, distributed and mediated.
The word ‘deep’ evokes conflicting ideas. On the one hand, there is Pauline Oliveros’ notion of deep listening, where the selective act of listening is explored through meditation, the body and performance, and the act of listening in everyday life. But ‘deep’ also suggests 21st-century phrases such as deep learning, deep web, the deep state and, most of all, deep fake, linked with concepts of AI, secrecy, conspiracy, surveillance and control.
In a world of artificial body enhancement, microdosing, neuroengineering, bot armies and crypto art, Unsound 2021 will investigate tensions between the synthetic and organic, the fake and the real, body and machine and online and offline, as well as uniqueness, replication, appropriation and commerce, all of which question yearnings for authentic experiences or an authentic self.
How does technology affect the idea of an individual voice, whether that be human or non-human? What does sincerity mean in artistic terms and for online personas and communities around music and art scenes? How do the art, wellness, tourism and food industries use concepts of authenticity to commodify local and personal histories and experiences? Might an embrace of the inauthentic liberate us from the binds of dichotomies that no longer serve us?
Unsound 2021: dəəp authentic will consider methods of twisting, upending or even breaking the presentation of live music and sound that radicalise or bring a different kind of energy into performance spaces that the pandemic has already altered.
Unsound is also announcing a call for entries from artists, writers, theorists and activists in response to dəəp authentic, focusing on presentations that blur the line between the discourse and performance programs. Between three to five entries will be included in the 2021 program and receive a fee of 2000 PLN each. As travel between much of the world remains uncertain and their capacity to bring people from outside Europe is limited, proposed works can be presented in Krakow or remotely. Still, travel and accommodation will be covered if the presenter comes to Krakow.
Those interested should make an initial proposal in less than 500 words, including links to supporting media, and submit it by June 25 to firstname.lastname@example.org.