Art, Tech & Culture

The Sinofuturist Trilogy: Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), Geomancer, and AIDOL

Art, Tech & Culture
07 Nov, 2020

The Sinofuturist Trilogy: Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), Geomancer, and AIDOL

An Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium Lecture, presented as part of A+D Mondays, co-sponsored by the Arts Research Center and the Department of Art Practice.

with Lawrence Lek
Artist, Filmmaker and Musician

Register for Zoom link here!
Or stream via YouTube at:

Video, Transcript, and Review Now Online

For the video of the seminar, click here.

For the transcript of the video, click here.

For a review of the event, click here!

Interlaced with conspiracy theories and speculative fiction, Lawrence Lek’s CGI films, installations, and open-world games explore the geopolitical impact of automation and simulation. His cinematic universe is populated with dreamers—intelligent satellites, freedom fighters, fading superstars—all searching for autonomy in a future dominated by data. Lek will integrate a live mix of excerpts from his recent films and video games, focusing on Geomancer (2017), and AIDOL (2019), his first feature-length film, both of which will be available for screening starting a week before the event. These projects revolve around the ideas theorized in Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), Lek’s 2016 video essay about the parallels between Chinese industrialization and portrayals of AI.

Screening links

Screening links to Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), Geomancer, and AIDOL will be live here starting on October 19th and ending on the day of the event.

About Lawrence Lek

Lawrence Lek is a London-based artist, filmmaker, and musician who unifies diverse practices—CGI, audio-visual performance, gaming, and fiction—into a continuously expanding cinematic universe. Drawing from a background in architecture and electronic music, he produces simulations of real places within future scenarios and alternate geopolitical histories. These worlds are populated with characters who want to be creators - surveillance satellites, digital sculptors, pop singers - all searching for autonomy under uncertain conditions of existence. Truth is entangled with fantasy; there is no clear divide between the human and the machine, or between the real and the virtual.

Recent works include the feature-length CGI film ‘AIDOL’ (2019), the ongoing open-world video game ‘2065’ (2018-), the video essay ‘Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD)’ (2016), the AI-coming-of-age story ‘Geomancer’ (2017), and ‘Nøtel’, a simulation of a fully-automated luxury hotel in collaboration with Kode9 (2016-). As a musician, Lek composes soundtracks and conducts live audio-visual mixes of his works, often incorporating live playthroughs of his open-world games. His most recent release is Temple OST, the soundtrack to his site-specific installation at 180 The Strand, London (The Vinyl Factory 2020).

Recent exhibitions include Farsight Freeport at HeK, House of Electronic Arts Basel, AIDOL, Sadie Coles HQ, London (2019); 2065, K11 Art Space, Hong Kong (2018); Play Station, Art Night and the Whitechapel Gallery, London (2017); Hyperpavilion, Arsenale Nord, Venice (2017); The New Normal, UCCA, Beijing (2017); Glasgow International, Tramway, Glasgow (2016); SeMA Biennale Mediacity Seoul, Seoul Museum of Art, Seoul (2016); Missed Connections, Julia Stoschek Collection, Dusseldorf (2016); Secret Surface, KW Institute for Contemporary Art, Berlin (2016). Lek received the 2017 Jerwood/FVU Award and the 2015 Dazed Emerging Artist Award.

About the Art, Technology, and Culture Colloquium

Founded by Prof. Ken Goldberg in 1997, the ATC lecture series is an internationally respected forum for creative ideas. Always free of charge and open to the public, the series is coordinated by the Berkeley Center for New Media and has presented over 200 leading artists, writers, and critical thinkers who question assumptions and push boundaries at the forefront of art, technology, and culture including: Vito Acconci, Laurie Anderson, Sophie Calle, Bruno Latour, Maya Lin, Doug Aitken, Pierre Huyghe, Miranda July, Billy Kluver, David Byrne, Gary Hill, and Charles Ray.

Fall 2020 - Spring 2021

Monday Evenings, 6:30-8:00pm
Online. Register in advance.


09/21 Notes on the Role of the Artist when the world has always been on fire??
Pope.L, Artist
Presented by the Department of Art Practice
Register here.

10/26 The Sinofuturist Trilogy: Sinofuturism (1839-2046 AD), Geomancer, and AIDOL
Lawrence Lek, Artist, Filmmaker and Musician
Co-sponsored by the Arts Research Center and the Department of Art Practice
Register here.


02/01 The Sonic Image
Lawrence Abu Hamdan, Artist, Beirut
Co-sponsored by the Center for Middle Eastern Studies, the Arts Research Center, and the Department of Art Practice
Register here.

03/01 The Right to Be Creative
Margarita Kuleva, National Research University Higher School of Economics, Moscow
Co-sponsored by the Department of Slavic Languages and Literature and Department of the History of Art and the Arts Research Center

04/22 Indigenous Games
Elizabeth LaPensée, Assistant Professor, Michigan State University
Co-sponsored by the Department of Art Practice
Please note: NEW TIME 5-6:30PM


BCNM events are free and open to the public. All of our events for the 2020-2021 academic year will be held on Zoom in English, in Pacific Standard Time (PST). We provide live-captioning in Zoom and offer a separate Streamtext window for live-captioning with options to customize text size and display. We strive to meet any additional access and accommodation needs. Please contact info.bcnm [at] with requests or questions.

BCNM is proud to make conversations with leading scholars, artists, and technologists freely available to the public. Please help us continue this tradition by making a tax-deductible donation today. If you are in the position to support the program, we suggest $5 per event, or $100 a year.

For updated information, maps, please see:

Contact: info.bcnm [​at​], 510-495-3505

ATC Director: Ken Goldberg
BCNM Director: Abigail de Kosnik
BCNM Liaisons: Lara Wolfe, Sophia Hussain

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