On Tour

Interdisciplinary Lab – Critical Distance at FREIRAUM (2021)


March 22-26, 2021: Cheers for Fears as guest at FREIRAUM in the “Critical Distance” series

The interdisciplinary conceptual and working space for the arts and sciences FREIRAUM and Cheers for Fears as a network of young arts are equally interested in questions of artistic collaboration. As a friendly take over, Cheers for Fears therefore designed a lab in the FREIRAUM series “Critical Distance” from March 22 to 26, 2021. Artists from all disciplines were invited for an intensive week to explore FREIRAUM, the urban and digital space as an interface field for interdisciplinary collaboration. Divided into three groups, we examined forms that combine physical and digital presence.

What spaces and what time do you need for interdisciplinary work? For many, artistic work under the conditions of physical distancing means a shift of working practice into the digital space or into the urban space With newly shuffled cards, collaborations of scenic artists, composers, animation artists, programmers, video artists, and others appear in a different light. In newly opened up working spaces, completely different artistic formats suddenly emerge. During the lab week, we explored our collaboration in terms of liveness: how to work (online) while sharing the resulting material? We also questioned the digital and analog spaces: to what extent do they shape the interdisciplinary work and the emerging art as a pre-set or matrix?

What is the potential of transferring one’s own skills to a new medium? What does a mutual contamination of analog and digital places look like, what forms the in-between? What new awareness and understanding of each other can artists gain through such an interdisciplinary testing of work sites?

We exchanged ideas about our specific ways of working, tried out new tools, questioned terms, started artistic experiments and heard input from choreographer Ben J. Riepe and choreographer Silvia Ehnis, among others.

The three groups were working parallely, in exchange with each other and alternated between FREIRAUM Düsseldorf, the surrounding urban space, and digital space.


(c) Robin Junicke