Polygonal Forest by FMA selected at the 2021 Ars Electronica International Art, Science and Technology Festival

The Polygonal Forest project, curated and designed by our team, will participate in Ars Electronica, to be held between September 8 and 12 of this year. This renowned festival, dedicated to the intersection of art, technology and society, will take place in a hybrid form with programs in their physical space in Linz, Austria, as well as from 120 locations around the world using the concept of "virtual gardens".

Since 1979, the festival and meeting of media arts Ars Electronica delves into the question of what new technologies mean. Once a year more than a thousand artists, scientists, developers, designers, entrepreneurs and activists gather in Austria to address central questions about our future, by sharing innovative ideas, cutting-edge research and unusual prototypes.

This year, the festival will develop under the theme of “A new digital deal: how the digital world could work”, and it will be carried out through face-to-face experiences and virtual gardens, which in turn will function as local programmatic venues for the festival around the world. Our foundation will take part in this year’s program together with two other Chilean institutions, participation that has the support of the Ministry of Cultures, Arts and Heritage of Chile and the Directorate of Cultural Affairs (DIRAC) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Chile.

Our team devised a proposal that invites us to rethink the way we interact and investigate in the forest by making virtual connections. Polygonal Forest is conceived as a virtual encounter in a temperate forest in the south of Chile, to explore its multiple sound, visual, biological, historical, cultural and conceptual dimensions. According to Maya Errázuriz, our Head of Art and Publications, “what Polygonal Forest seeks is to make us reflect on our role as humans when entering these ecosystems, not as external bodies but as integral components of the rich interrelationships that coexist in these natural sacred spaces.”

This online platform of natural-virtual encounters considers a program that is divided into 4 paths that invite the viewer to enter spaces that offer a series of experiences. In the first of these paths, there will be an exhibition room that considers the presentation of 5 audiovisual works by artists Elisa Balmaceda, Claudia Müller, Etienne de France, Gregorio Fontén and Marcos Sánchez. Through their works, visitors will be able to walk through a forest from the sky, descending between its layers, until reaching down to the roots of trees, and then visualizing future imageries. In the second path, visitors will find workshops and educational experiences that will explore the topics covered by the artists. The third, will be a space for meetings and dialogues that invites experts in art and ecology. Finally, the fourth path will present works that will be chosen through an open-call competition that will summon digital works made by young artists.

Polygonal Forest is an initiative of Fundación Mar Adentro in collaboration with the University of Bristol – Arts and Humanities Research Council, Green Art Lab Alliance, Fundación Centro de Cine y Promoción and Geocom.