geek picnic
Geek Picnic. June, 25-26, 2016, St. Petersburg, Central Park of Culture and Recreation

ARTS4CITY team took part in one of the biggest open-air science, techonology and art festivals Geek Picnic 2016.

  Interactive installation in “Geek types”

Cosplayer from a closet, Geek kid and a disinterested parent, foreign celebrity, Geek family, bored salesman, lonely Furri, random granny, guys satisfied with everything, a guy who doesn’t like anything, PRO-cosplayers and Geek characters that were described by festival organizers at their public page.

ARTS4CITY decided to animate the portraits of these characters in the most geek format possible – in pixels. Guests of the festival assembled them themselves, using pieces of colorful plastic as pixels. Guests were also invited to go beyond the ascribed roles and create their own Geek types.

On three big canvases festival guests could assemble images of the most typical – in the view of festival organizers – Geek Picnic participants: Cosplayer, Lecturer, Lonely Furry, Random Granny and others. We also offered participants to create their own characters if they don’t agree with the ‘typical’.

Adults, children and people of third age took part in filling in the canvases with pixels from colorful plastic. The given task was to make fully sized Geek types based on colorful sketches provided on the canvases, which already had an outline on them. Already at this stage some of the participants went beyond the rules changing the colors and elements of the designs of the Geek types. The ‘Random Granny’ type was subject to the greatest number of alterations. Perhaps, it was looking so dull on the sketch that people’ve decided to make it look more cheerful.

In some time we saw that the pixels started spreading beyond the borders of the canvases and transmitted to people’s clothes, furniture and even skin, and then set off traveling around the festival premises. Though the new characters didn’t appear, participants have altered the very principle of how the artistic material was used what we haven’t expected at all.

  Discussion ”Where sign on a fence ends and street art begins?”

ARTS4CITY presented its view on the role of arts in urban redesign and activation in the discussion organized by Okhta Lab.

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ARTS4CITY coordinator Aleksandra Nenko took part in the discussion organized by Okhta Lab during Geek Picnic 2016 on June 25th. Other discussants were: Mikhail Astakhov, Anna Nistratova, Artem Burzh, Albina Motor, and Katerina Timofeyeva.

Participants discussed definitions of street art and public art, quality criteria for art in urban environment, role of a curator in street art works and St.Petersburg real estate projects which employ street art. Aleksandra Nenko raised questions about street art as  an important component of urban development projects and role of publics in public art projects.