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Work / Animation

Brutal, bright and brilliant Amsterdam festival promo from Studio Crême

If, like us, you dig early net art, electronic music and retina-searing visuals, we reckon you’ll be into Jack Featherstone’s new film promo for Amsterdam festival Dekmantel. With its flashes of colour, complex coding aesthetics and a final brutal assault of names, it’s a line-up announcement that’s both informative and utterly absorbing.

The film depicts the universe “from the perspective of an artificial superintelligence,” showing imposing landscapes, vast galaxies and computer wizardry. In the final few moments, a strobing barrage of text reveals the complete 2016 festival line-up.

“Initially the breadth of the concept appeared quite intimidating, but after a lengthy period of researching the way in which computers actually ‘see’ the world, some general areas of interest began to emerge,” Jack explains. “These included facial recognition, edge detection, landscape scanning, gesture detection, vector fields, data corruption, data analysis and space. The aim was to create a bold, but complex visual world for the film that drew directly from the raw aesthetics of machine vision.”

The film is just one aspect of an adaptable and smart campaign around the festival, with each act having their own gif portrait that can live online to help hype them up before the event kicks off in August. Jack says: “The style for these portraits was directly informed by the actual way in which computers recognise faces. Over 30 artists posted their portraits, leading to many entertaining comments from fans trying to put two and two together to figure out what they all meant.”

Jack, of Studio Crême, worked alongside independent creative director Bas van de Poel and the Dekmantel team to realise the project.

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Studio Crême: Dekmantel (still)

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Studio Crême: Dekmantel (still)

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Studio Crême: Dekmantel (still)

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Studio Crême: Dekmantel (still)

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Studio Crême: Dekmantel (still)