Blockchain: Utopia or U-turn? / ONASSIS CULTURAL CENTRE

Blockchain: Utopia or U-turn?

9-10 & 16-17 FEB 2019 
Inside & Outside the Onassis Stegi
What is a blockchain? How might blockchain technology change our lives? Thinkers, artists and hackers at a festival that explores the economic and artistic applications—subversive and otherwise—of this exciting technology in our networked world.
The blockchain technology underpins the digital currency Bitcoin, which was created in 2008. We could describe it as an encrypted digital spreadsheet which is shared between users and records financial data and transactions, contracts and bilateral agreements without the intervention of a central administrator, such as banks. 

The festival invites thinkers, artists and hackers to discuss the dialectic of resistance and recuperation which characterizes blockchain technology. It is a fascinating subject for study which helps us understand and envisage our position in our digitally networked society.

Although blockchain has mainly been adopted by investors and entrepreneurs, it is also extensively employed by communities that explore radical and alternative uses to which the technology can be put in the arts, music, media and governance. But the new technology raises political and ethical questions, since, while it achieves social reciprocity and removes the need for mediators, it also presents an investment opportunity for a new—digital—elite. 


Curated by: Voltnoi Brege & Quetempo

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An introduction on blockchain, money and hi-tech finance

18:00 – 18:30 | Voltnoi & Quetempo
History of money
18:30 – 19:00 | George Papageorgiou
Introduction of Blockchain technologies
19:00 – 19:30 | Denis Jaromil Rojo
Bitcoin, the end of the Taboo on Money
19:45 – 20:30 | Benjamin H. Bratton
Tokens: A Rorschach Test
20:15-21:30 | Saskia Sassen
Predatory Formations Dressed in Wall Street Suits and Algorithmic Math

Blockchain as a form of governance, law and social empowerment

18:00 – 18:30 | Dimitris Vourakis
18:30 – 19:00 | Marco Sachy
How blockchain technology can foster social innovation
19:00 – 19:30 | Jaya Klara Brekke
Authority, autonomy and trust - a political history of blockchain

Blockchain applications and speculations in the arts

18:00 – 18:30 | Matthew Liston
Faith machines: amplified reflexivity between value and belief
18:30 – 19:00 | Ruth Catlow (Furtherfield)
Artists Re:Thinking the blockchain
19:00 – 19:30 | Kei Kreutler
Blockchain ecologies
19:45 – 20:30 | Mat Dryhurst
Own or be Owned: A stake in the heart of undead music
23:00 – 6:00 | Cryptorave in secret location
by !Mediengruppe Bitnik + Omsk Social Club + DETACH
with: Arpanet, Amnesia Scanner, Bill Kouligas, M.E.S.H., Voltnoi

A critique on blockchain technologies

18:00 – 18:45 | Ubermorgen
The Chinese Coin (red Blood)
19:00 – 19:30 | David Gerard
Critique on Blockchain
19:30 – 20:00 | Jemima Kelly
Critique on Blockchain
20:15-20:30 | James Bridle
New Dark Age: Technology and the End of the Future

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Hospitality sponsor

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