ZURICH MEETS NEW YORK: A Festival of Swiss Ingenuity Set for 5/16-23

ZURICH MEETS NEW YORK: A Festival of Swiss Ingenuity Set for 5/16-23

Performing and visual artists, scientists and urban planners, public intellectuals and researchers will come together to examine the far-reaching influence of one of Europe's great cities, as New York hosts Zürich Meets New York: A Festival of Swiss Ingenuity, May 16-23. The multi-venue, citywide festival takes its inspiration from the upcoming 100th anniversary of the Dada movement, founded in Zurich by refugees fleeing World War I, and the city's current role as a global center of artistic and scientific innovation. In all, 25 events will engage audiences in panels and performances highlighting the contemporary relevance of visionary movements and ideas born in Zurich and their impact on American culture.

Zürich Meets New York: A Festival of Swiss Ingenuity is presented by the Consulate General of Switzerland in New York, the City of Zurich, ETH Zurich and the University of Zurich (UZH).

Featured participants include novelist Renata Adler, choreographer Simone Aughterlony, new music ensemble Collegium Novum, neuro-economist Ernst Fehr, science editor Fred Guterl, theater production company Giants Are Small, urban planner Constantine E. Kontokosta, novelist Ben Marcus, cultural icon Dieter Meier, artificial intelligence expert Rolf Pfeifer, policy analyst T. Irene Sanders, video game developer Tim Schafer, veteran option trader Nassim N. Taleb, and physicist and economist Didier Sornette, among others.

"In the spirit of Dadaism and its legendary Cabaret Voltaire, we invite New Yorkers to participate in lively, provocative debates and performances capturing Zurich's incredible creative force," says Ambassador François Barras, Consul General of Switzerland in New York. "How is Dada understood and lived by 21st century artists? How can we build more resilient cities, systems and societies for a new century? What is Jung's influence on screenwriting and video games? The festival provides a vibrant 'third space' for these dynamic conversations."

Located in the heart of Europe at the crossroads of many cultures, Zurich is renowned as Switzerland's thriving, cosmopolitan city. Yet, it is also a hothouse of innovation, a place that encourages-and celebrates-out-of-the-box thinking. Some of the 20th-century's greatest innovators have influenced, and been influenced, by Zurich. Carl Jung, the father of analytic psychology, and novelist/playwright Max Frisch called it home. Albert Einstein spent eight years working in Zurich, where he developed his theory of general relativity. The Dada movement was born there in 1916, and James Joyce worked on Ulysses from 1915-20 in the city. Today, it is home to ETH Zurich, Einstein's alma mater and one of Europe's top-ranked universities for sciences and technology, and the esteemed University of Zurich (UZH); together they have produced more than 28 Nobel laureates. Zurich's ingenuity plays out in a remarkable range of spheres: from lab sciences to urban systems, literature to pop music, and psychoanalysis to video games.

Zürich Meets New York: A Festival of Swiss Ingenuity will partner with prestigious institutions such as the New Museum, the New York Academy of Sciences, the Center for Architecture, and The Kitchen, among others, and 25 events will take place in venues crisscrossing the city from Lincoln Center to Le Poisson Rouge and downtown galleries.
Highlights include:
Arts & Culture:

  • A spectacular, never-before-experienced evening curated by acclaimed theater production company Giants Are Small (Doug Fitch and Edouard Getaz), featuring Dada acts by American and Swiss artists (The Box; Meeting point to be disclosed only to participants, 5/17)
  • Electro-pop pioneer Dieter Meier of Yello, singing electro-chansons with his new band Out of Chaos, backed by some of today's best Swiss Jazz musicians (Le Poisson Rouge, 5/18)
  • A panel discussion between renowned game developer Tim Schafer (Psychonauts, Broken Age), Jungian analyst Christopher Hauke and others on Carl G. Jung's impact on film and video games (New York Institute of Technology, 5/22)
  • A rare screening of Dada short silent films (Richter, René Clair), and the American classic The Fall of the House of Usher, accompanied live by Collegium Novum Zurich, playing original and newly commissioned scores (David Rubenstein Atrium at Lincoln Center, 5/16)
  • A panel discussion with novelists Renata Adler, Ben Marcus, and scholars on Max Frisch's work and a writer's moral and political responsibility (Deutsches Haus at NYU, 5/20)
  • A world premiere by one of the most talented Zurich-based choreographers Simone Aughterlony (The Kitchen, 5/20 & 21)
  • A series of films by world-renowned visual artist Urs Fischer (SVA Theatre, 5/19-21)

Science & Technology:

  • An afternoon of panels and talks on the new science of complex systems, featuring Fred Guterl (The Fate of the Species), T. Irene Sanders (Strategic Thinking and the New Science), financial economist Didier Sornette, complexity scientist Dirk Helbing and others (NYAS, 5/21)
  • A panel exploring new models of risk and their quest to minimize damage from future blackouts, hurricanes and other disasters, featuring experts from ETH Zurich, Swiss Re, Nassim N. Taleb (The Black Swan), and William Rouse (NYAS, 5/22)
  • Leading neuro-economist Ernst Fehr and expert in artificial intelligence Rolf Pfeifer, both hailing from the University of Zurich, discussing their groundbreaking work (NYAS, 5/19)
  • A seminar on future resilient cities, in partnership with Center for Urban Progress (NYU), and hosted by IDEAS CITY, designed to encourage a cohesive and innovative urban language drawing from both sciences and the arts (New Museum, 5/20)
  • John E. Kelly (Director of IBM Research) and Lino Guzzella (Rector ETH Zurich) discussing how a new era of cognitive computing is transforming business and society, after the victory of IBM's Watson on Jeopardy (NYAS, 5/21)
  • A close-up look at Disney's latest research on robotics, digital fabrication, computer-generated imagery and animation (NeueHouse, 5/22)
  • Talks and presentations on Data Science, and how smart gadgets and the Internet are revolutionizing daily life, medicine, and transportation, featuring experts from ETH Zurich, IBM Research, Google and others (NYAS, 5/23)

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