Invisible cities – before Covid
September 23, 2020

Triggered by the thematic of the book – Invisible Cities from Italo Calvino.

Collaboration with the Doing Group and Heart of Noise festival

In the Year 3 openspace is continuing the practice in detecting potentials of our city, the neighborhood, spaces and thoughts of the between. Again, we will challenge ourselves, and the artists, to intervene, engage with the city, tell the story about it by suggesting diverse realities.
In our next MC cycle openspace turns more into direction of discursive practice and performative art, based on critical thinking, dialogue, and a step further, towards imagination and visions of possible scenarios.
During several months over the Year 2020 our project development has strive to transform this big creative force into multiple directions – collaborations, exchanges, education, networking-opportunities, significant artistic work in our socio-cultural surroundings which should direct affect the value of artistic and creative potential in our society and its transformational process. Year 3 Project is co-curated by the Peter Lorenz from performance collective The Doing Group and will ones again be developed within the Heart of Noise festival.
We decided some months ago to join forces and develop a common project. We came far. The process-oriented program, with numerous collaborations – local and international, was supposed to start at the end of April … Some microscopic creature mixed up our plans. But also gave us a time – to reflect, to rethink. We are still in the process!

Main partners: The doing group and Hear of Noise

The Doing Group is an international collaborative performance group formed out of 6 Glasgow University’s Theatre Students 5 years ago and led by our local Magic Carpets artist – Peter Lorenz. The group is concerned with the process of ‘doing’, which in turn produces new realities. Its practice is one of constructive and open questioning. Performance is a means for inquiry. The Doing Group benefits from a wide range of practices such as dance and movement, opera, street performance and contemporary devising, conjoining to create varied range of perspectives. Their work consists of theatrology, philosophy, ecology, urban theory, movement and teaching.

Local electronic sound festival – Heart of Noise will continue to have a significant role in our Magic Carpets processes in Innsbruck. The sound remains to stay a medium we want to explore more for the purpose of discovering potentials of auditability in our surrounding, but also because of his ability to stimulate imagination.

Every resident lives their own reality of Innsbruck. We see democracy as the process of perceiving and negotiating these different realities, allowing and reconciling them. The process-oriented performance project INVISIBLE CITIES INNSBRUCK is about exploring, documenting and discussing a wide range of lived perspectives and invisible versions of the city of Innsbruck in workshops, imaginative interventions and participatory performances at various public places throughout Innsbruck.
The project is inspired by Italo Calvino’s novel Invisible Cities, in which Marco Polo tells the ruler Kublai Khan about a multitude of fantastic cities. However, the imaginatively detailed places all turn.


set out to be versions of a single city — Venice.
We want to rewrite the book Invisible Cities into an open multimedia format with each chapter capturing different versions of Innsbruck, examining the intersections of city, memory, and imagination: what perspectives, lifestyles and living spaces exist in Innsbruck and how can these be portrayed performatively?
The Doing Group aims to decentralise the perception of Innsbruck by locating the activities outside of the city center. For four weeks we will be situated in public spaces throughout each of the quarters, housed in a temporary, mobile structure designed by a local architecture collective, that invites curiosity and participation. With the help of local partnering organisations, we will offer inclusive and accessible formats for the residents of the neighbourhoods with an aim to challenge the homogenised narrative of Innsbruck as a sterile old town for tourists.  (The Doing Group)


The month long performance will take the format of a book. A cover page and table of contents will announce the program.

Echoing Calvino’s structure of each chapter handling the cities’ relationships with varying emotions, exchanges and evocations, we intend to replicate this affective characterization of the city through our own efforts. Chapters will focus on differing relations to Innsbruck and take wildly different forms. To ‘read’ each and every chapter will be a challenge to an individual, but we hope that to stumble across at least one chapter will be unavoidable. The chapters will be documented and collected on the website and all feed into a closing presentation: At the end of the four weeks, an imaginary book launch will bring together all actors of the chapters and conclude with a performance of the book’s index. This creative rendering of the experiences signposts the multiplicity of perspectives and formats encompassed in the book.

Artists selected for the Magic Carpets residency:

Nicola di Croce (Venice, Italy)
An architect, musician, sound artist and postdoctoral research fellow at Università IUAV di Venezia Architettura. Nicola was suggested by our MC platform-partner organization Latitudo Art Projects from Rome. 
Nicola deals with the relationship between Urban Studies and Sound Studies and his artist in residency will take place between now and November 2020 in Innsbruck (dates – tbc due COVID-19). Through articles, lectures, field recordings, performances, installations, and listening sessions he aims to foster sonic awareness, as an empowerment tool for institutions, and local communities, thus exploring new potentials for urban regeneration, participatory processes and local development. Nicola will take position in the artistic-cultural context of Innsbruck and work close with artists from The Doing Group as well as with few more local artist and experts. Their concrete artistic work should be developed on the interface between sound, performance, discourse and technology and understood as vehicle for dialogue with the citizens.

Peter Lorenz (Innsbruck, Austria)
Is our this-years local artist and co-curator, coming from the theater and performance field (stage director, performance maker, producer, a nomadic soul). As part of the international performance collective The Doing Group, Peter is constantly experimenting with new modes and formats of contemporary performance that investigate urban cycles, post-humanism and global interconnection.  Apart from studying at the United World College in Mostar (BiH) and the University of Glasgow (UK), Peter has been working regularly as assistant director for opera companies such as the Festival of Early Music in Innsbruck (AUT), the Musikfestspiele Potsdam Sanssouci (GER), Scottish Opera (UK) and as revival director at the Theater St.Gallen .

New Performance Format of 9 different chapters for the public space in Innsbruck (AT) in collaboration with openspace.innsbruck & Magic Carpets Creative Europe Platform, Z6 Streetwork, Bilding, ISD, IKB, IVB, Volksschule Fischerstraße, Freirad, Bergisel Betriebs GmbH, iBus – AEP, BRUX Freies Theater, Ferdinandeum, funded by the City of Innsbruck stadt_potenziale.

Residency activities timeline before COVID19:
Study visit – The Doing Group – October 2019
Study visit MC artist March 2020
Residency mid of April to mid of May 2020
Presentation May – begin of June 2020
Heart of Noise Festival – 30. May to 3. of June 2020

Residency activities timeline after COVID19 (tbd)