Blog: Schmiede17 – Art Jam in Austria

Ray Mann’s postcards from Schmiede 2017: 10 days of creating things with strangers at the annual “playground for ideas” in Hallein, Austria.

This is a live blog – check back for updates.

The Schmiede artist residency is held in the old Hallein Salt Mine in Salzburg, Austria – an amazing venue which, once a year, is host to a select group of creative minds from a wide range of disciplines: game designers, machine builders, electronics designers, coders, video artists, dancers, musicians, and more.

This is my third time to be invited to participate, create, collaborate, and exhibit at the event. These are my postcards – this post is a live blog, so check back for updates.

After my first year contributing video and audio to myriad projects, and my second year creating my own live electronic music performance installation, this time around I’m without any overly ambitious project idea – so I’m packing light. No video equipment this time.

Project 1: Beat Retreat

I’ve come with some fellow Brrrlin expats and regular collaborators Ducks! and Luckless. We’ve created our own little red zone in a freezing hallway. We practice only musical ways of keeping warm:

Look out: it’s another late-night, red light collab with Mr Craig “Schuftronic” Schüftan from Ducks!

Here’s one of the things we made:

Project 2: This Is Not Pollock

An old friend returns: my girl is auditioning for a feature role in a big art project. Fingers crossed.

My girl got the part! The large-scale rendering of her has begun…

Matthias Krauß has built a system where a bucket, suspended from a wire two storeys high, swings around and drips ink in a way that may look random – where actually, there is a computer sending “release” messages to the bucket at precise points. The result: imagine a large format printer that builds its image more like an impressionist or expressionist painting… although, as Matthias titled it: This Is Not Pollock.

Project 3: Ori Moto

My electronic project Ori Moto may have been born in Brrrlin, but it’s been midwifed in Schmiede. Each year I develop a unique live performance with production input from audio-savvy residents, and collaboration with video and projection artists. This year I jammed with Alexandra Reichart and Jan Luis Gottwald:

Behind the scenes of those psychedelic visuals:

#Light, #color, #glitter, #wine and a big mess for @raymann3 at @schmiedehallein #Schmiede

A post shared by Alexandra Reichart (@alexandrareichart) on

The full audio of the track in that short video:

What better way to develop new music than to DJ it to a select crew of hackers, coders, makers and producers?

Seems it went ok – I now have at least one new follower…

#schmeidey #danceparty

A post shared by luckless (@soluckless) on


As it does each year, Schmiede17 culminates in a final night exhibition of what the Smiths have cooked up over the past 10 days. I managed to catch only glimpses of the final Werkschau – will add them here in the coming days:

More postcards coming soon – check back…

More information about Schmiede here.

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