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The Influencers 2019

Unconventional Art, Guerrilla Communication, Radical Entertainment

Every year since 2004 The Influencers festival has been inviting artists, hacktivists and researchers to share with the audience their experience with rebellious projects, inventions and adventures in the unstable realm where everyday technology and collective imagination collide, often times with unexpected results.


They work across a wide range of formats, most recently transitioning platforms from an online magazine to a video-streaming edutainment channel on

Shanzhai Lyric

Conceived by artists and researchers Ming Lin and Alexandra Tatarsky, the project takes inspiration from the experimental English of shanzhai (i.e.


They are a Japanese art collective established in 2005 and emerged from the "lost generation", young people raised after the burst of the economic bubble in the early 21st century. Chim↑Pom develop ingenious forms of social criticism through paradoxical or absurd projects, drawn by everything that is considered marginal or dangerous as a catalyst to expose the paradox of social safety and consumer nihilism, from dissected Tokyo’s “super-rats” to American visitor centers at the Mexican side of the border, or an auction of remains of landmine explosions in war zones.

Shu Lea Cheang

"Cheang does with Internet technologies what Pasolini did with film, and Kathy Acker with literature: turn a medium against itself only to reconnect it with political history and social agency. In doing so, the post-Internet digital avant-garde, to which Cheang belongs, challenges the aesthetics of Internet global capitalism and the politics of identity construction fueled by social media and exploited by marketing and political control alike.


This interdisciplinary collective working at the crossroads of research, design and digital subcultures, presents their most recent research about the bizarre and often awkward ways internet cultures are making politization visible, and how it mutates into something unrecognizable or obscene.

Mitra Azar


DoppelGANger is a research about human faces automatically generated by a GAN system, a field in artificial intelligence in which two neural networks compete against each other to learn and autonomously produce an output. The first installment is the result of a collaboration between the festival and the renowned Fotomuseum Winterthur (Switzerland).

Monira Al Qadiri

Petrochemicals in Purgatory

How about a future without oil? That is the main theme of the research that Monira Al Qadiri performes at The Influencers . Born in Senegal, raised in Kuwait, and educated in Japan, Al Qadiri adopts a range of imaginative strategies to shape histories both personal and political: Arab soap operas, Gulf War–era images of burning Kuwaiti oil fields, traditional elegiac songs, decontextualized industrial artifacts, and science fiction all figure in her manifold work, which subtly puts otherwise unnoticed networks of capital and labor into the foreground.


Author of what has been dubbed as “the most elegant forkbomb ever written”, he is also an expert in the politics of technology, especially regarding the Internet of Things, Blockchain, and Cyber Security. In the last couple of decades planetary-scale computation precipitated the ongoing transformation of existing jurisdictions and disciplinary realms, a trend that is both depicted and tackled by the notion of algorithmic sovereignty.