“For the fifth year A MAZE. is welcoming african and international independent game developers, artists, forward thinkers, vr designers and digital activists in Johannesburg to exchange tools, skills and ideas in the fields of independent games and playful media. This year we like to create positive chaos!" --- Thorsten S. Wiedemann, founder and director of A MAZE.
A MAZE. / Johannesburg is also a public event. Open arcade with the best selection of amazing independent videogames and alternative games with weird controllers. We bring together what belongs together. Games, music and people.
A MAZE. / Johannesburg is an annual evolving platform for african and international playful media artists. Also a playground for everyone who wants to experience the magic of the Human-Human-Machine interaction.
A MAZE. provides an intensive 3-day program with talks, workshops, panels, hypertalks, screenings, artistic games, VR experiences, playful installations, concerts, av performances and party in the heart of Johannesburg, Braamfontein.
Since A MAZE. is the first festival of that kind in Africa we have the responsibility to create a platform that grows from inside to secure the longterm goals like a national funding systems, more and effective international collaborations between universities, institutions, cultural agencies, studios and creatives
Thanks due the funding by the City of Johannesburg we’re also able to create one A MAZE. Pop up in Soweto.
DISCONNECTED is a performance in the year of Big VR. Thorsten S. Wiedemann (founder and director of A MAZE. ) is VRNaut, leaving behind reality for the radical duration of 48 hours. No human being has ever spent such a long time in computer generated Virtual Reality.
10 years later.
It is now the year 2026. People spend much of their time in Virtual Reality (VR) for entertainment, education, training, enjoying themselves in thousands of digital worlds. New art-forms and ways of storytelling have prevailed. It is normal that you jump into VR to meet your international friends in Social VR Rooms and go on crazy adventures together. You visit locations you'd never dreamt of, learn languages and cooking skills in authentic environments.
Everyone has their consumer glasses at home, good enough for low interaction, and small world experiences. But if you want real embodiment in digital worlds you must visit the legal and illegal VRCenters in order to book your personalised VR experience. These trips are curated by VRShamans, skilled people who monitor your reactions and health and bring you back safely after your journey. The journeys themselves depend on personal preferences and can last for a day or even a week.
DISCONNECTED will give you a taste of this future. Sara Lisa Vogl (VR Designer/ Lucid Trips/ VR Stammtisch) and first VRShaman will create daily routines filled with interactions in virtual worlds. The line-up and the list of worlds will be released online after Thorsten disconnects.