The world of the XXI century is decoupling and splitting into two alternative, yet coexisting strata: physical and virtual. The pandemic of smartphones, the omnipresence of social networks in our mundane and political realities, buoyant alternatives in video game worlds and the utopian land of the metaverse – all of it pushes the “users” to gradually move or even escape to the soothing virtual meadows.
Isn’t the vision of a better world promised by virtuality just a reflection of the mundane in a broken smart mirror? Perhaps humanity is closing in on itself and moving towards a corporate-run technological dystopia, or rather glimmers with undiscovered utopian possibilities and connections of minds? What is the meaning and value of architecture in worlds without borders and conventional rules? Does the architect have and can say something in the creation of virtual spaces? Or maybe it is the electronic garden of a concept artist, level designer, worldbuilder, programmer or after all – artificial intelligence, into which it is too difficult for an architect to enter?
The 30th cycle of the A Pokalbiai talk series will look at the increasingly intertwined perspective of our bipolar world. During the run of five lectures, various professionals will try to shift our understanding of the real and the virtual, to reveal the possibilities and dangers of the digital space and will encourage everyone in and around the field of architecture not to be afraid to innovate and join the virtual space.