V2_Lab is an instigator of artistic projects which interrogate and illuminate contemporary issues in art, science, technology, and society. Our mission is to produce works of art with conceptual clarity and high production values, provide frameworks for presenting these artworks, and create meaningful exchanges on artistic research and production methods. V2_Lab is an autonomous zone where experiments and collaborations can take place outside of the constraints of innovation agendas or economic and political imperatives.
The activities of V2_Lab cover a spectrum ranging from Think-Tank to Do-Tank, from research to creation and presentation of art. To accomplish this, formats such as expert meetings, workshops, residencies, publications, conferences and exhibitions are tailored to meet the requirements of individual projects.
V2_Lab Methods (two examples)
Design Fiction and Extreme Scenarios
Design fiction is an exercise in visionary storytelling, making our wildest dreams for our future more vivid. We use design fiction as a method to sketch future scenarios, from the probable to impossible. The desires expressed in these narratives may tend toward urgent problem solving or simply indicate the height of our ambition where provocative statements or questions are deployed to unlock the most interesting answers. These narratives can be communicated through video, objects, storyboarding, writing and other media, to spark the conversation with an audience. One way to implement design fiction is by means of an extreme scenario; an exaggeration of a situation to inspire thought about critical issues. Shaping narratives that overstate problems or postulate extravagant (or even ridiculous) solutions is a proven effective artistic method to raise issues, stir up debates, or make a point.
Concepts Revisited: Re-enactments
New concepts come into artmaking far less frequently than practical ideas, ideas that can be reused for a thousand variations, supplying the framework for a whole body of work rather than a single piece.
Reiteration is an age-old artistic technique to achieve more subtle readings of significant creative gestures: think Glenn Gould’s Goldberg Variations recordings in 1955 and 1980, which couldn’t be more different though they emanate from the same score and were performed by the same person. The meaningful comparison between two interpretations is not how they rank, but how they work.
Despite the fact that art centred around ideas is more interesting than art that deals with technique, the art produced today is doubtlessly shaped by the tools presently at hand. Since certain tools make certain results possible, the history of art is tightly coupled to the history of technology. With re-enactments, the passage of time means that previous technological promises are trivial, and losing the novelty of new technology means we are free to look closer at the core concepts. By asking artists to revisit works which resonated strongly among their peers and audiences, V2_lab aims to unearth the key techniques and themes of our time, inviting a process of re-invention which will uncover the underlying ideas.