When spaces lose their dimensions and generate sculptural illusions, when waves of information are suddenly transformed into images: then Refik Anadol must be at the Zurich Schiffbau centre.

The boundaries between the digital and physical world are becoming ever more fluid, and this is an area Refik Anadol has been exploring for years. Born in Istanbul, Turkey, in 1985, the artist belongs to the first digital generation. Today, Refik Anadol is a lecturer and visiting researcher in the Design Media Arts department of UC Los Angeles, where he also lives. But first and foremost, Refik Anadol is an artist who transforms the transcendence between data and illusion into a visual spectacle.

Visionary art

How does a Turkish student end up in Los Angeles, teaching the future of media to the US elite of tomorrow? Through visionary art. After graduating from the Institute for Visual Communication Design at Bilgi University, Turkey, Anadol completed his Master’s. With an art scholarship in his pocket, he went to the USA. His interpretation of a post-digital architecture has been wowing global audiences from east to west for years.

How do data change reality?

Refik Anadol works in the field of audiovisual performance design and architectural projection. As an audiovisual artist, designer and spatial thinker, Anadol is fascinated by how the transformation of the subject of contemporary culture demands that we rethink the new aesthetic, technology and the dynamic perception of space. In other words, how do data change reality? You have to see Refik Anadol’s art for yourself to understand it.

Anadol is in extremely high demand as an artist these days. The high point of his career so far was when he was commissioned by the Los Angeles Philharmonic to illuminate the façade of the famous Walt Disney Concert Hall for its centenary. To do this, he used images and films from a data archive which was almost 50 terabytes in size.

At the Volvo Art Session 2019, Refik Anadol will be showing another highlight: “Melting Memories” is more than just an art project – it is also a research object. But it’s best if you come and be amazed by it yourself.