At the Serpentine Research & Development Lab

Tuesday 6th July, 2021 - Bruce Sterling

“The  Future Art Ecosystems: Art x Metaverse (FAE2).”

“The purpose of Future Art Ecosystems (FAE) is to provide analytical and conceptual tools and strategic guidance for the construction of 21st-century cultural infrastructure: the systems that would support art and advanced technologies as a whole, and be responsive to a broader societal agenda.”

Dear Friends,

Today we share with you the release of Future Art Ecosystems: Art x Metaverse (FAE2). This second issue of Future Art Ecosystems was prepared as the world was coming to grips with a major global challenge—a healthcare emergency that has not only claimed a great number of tragic deaths but which has also put various pre-existing systems,—economic, social and geopolitical—under immense strain. We do not yet know the long-term or even the mid-term effects of the COVID19 pandemic on the institutional fabric underwriting our societies, and in this context it might seem premature to be sketching out a vision for a 21st-century cultural infrastructure. Yet, as history has proven time and time again, major crises also breed major paradigm shifts and technological transitions, so the responsibility of the cultural sector is to at least understand what is at play and attempt to adjust accordingly.

The advent of the metaverse—an always-online, persistent, spatial ‘second’ world—represents a fundamental shift in our notion of digital systems and presence, requiring new technological and organisational vocabularies in order to grasp its implications. While the vision for the metaverse is far from new—the dovetailing of pandemic conditions and the maturing of relevant technologies have made the metaverse a far more imminent reality. Based on 50+ interviews with practitioners across art, gaming, film, architecture, technology and policy, FAE2 outlines a framework for assessing the challenges and opportunities of the metaverse for an emerging 21-st century cultural infrastructure.

Please join us for the presentation of FAE2 on 13 July 2021 at 5pm BST via Serpentine’s Twitch.

Following this, on 26 July 2021, Serpentine R&D Platform’s Legal Lab will release a report on the legal issues in art and tech/science collaborations, documenting the Lab’s findings from survey and interview-based research conducted over 18 months with over 250 artists, curators, technologists, scientists, cultural institutions, galleries, funders, tech companies, legal academics and lawyers. 

Please also join us for the presentation of Legal Lab Report 1: Art + Tech/Science Collaborations on 26 July 2021 at 11.30 BST via Serpentine’s Twitch.

We look forward to hearing your feedback and answering your questions!
Serpentine R&D Team