Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023

April 20, 2023  18:45  |  M.I.C. News

Sónar+D’s comprehensive program of 130 activities solidifies Barcelona’s place as one of the world’s most significant hubs for artistic, scientific, and technological communities. The festival highlights the city’s growing and diverse ecosystem.
Sónar+D will occupy the entire Palau de Congressos de Fira Montjuïc from 10 am to 9 pm this year, expanding across the Sónar by Day venues.

Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023

Photos – courtesy of Sónar ©

Artificial Intelligence takes the spotlight as the headliner of this year’s Sónar+D edition. The program offers an array of training and dissemination activities, guided by renowned creative studios, artists, and researchers at the forefront of AI innovation. Among the notable names participating in this inclusive program, accessible to all audiences, are Daito Manabe and Yuya Hanai from Rhizomatiks (Japan), Joel Gethin Lewis from Universal Everything (UK), Pau García from Domestic Data Streamers (Spain), and CJ Carr from Harmonai (part of Stable Diffusion).
Moreover, as part of the SonarExtra program, Sónar+D presents a range of complementary activities centered around AI. In 2023, SonarMies makes a comeback with the evolution of the ‘Piano+AI’ show, co-produced by Sónar and the UPC in 2021. The Mies van der Rohe Pavilion transforms into an open laboratory for ‘Reprocessing… Piano+AI’. As a prelude to this, Sónar+D, in collaboration with the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), is promoting the +RAIN Film Fest, Europe’s first international film festival dedicated to movies entirely created using AI.

Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023

Eric Pridz presents HOLO

Sónar+D has a new exhibition area called Project Area, where you can see, hear and touch the most groundbreaking creative-technological projects. Over 80 works will be showcased, mostly selected through an international Open Call. The area will feature music and sound works, visual and immersive projects like Virtual Reality and Augmented Reality, video games, and tools and instruments created by artists, scientists, designers and technologists.
Many of the pieces were developed locally, with works from institutes like the Institute for Research in Biomedicine, the Museo Nacional de Ciencia y Tecnología, and HacTe (the Barcelona hub for art, science, and technology). There are also works from around the world from places like L’Institut de Recherche et Coordination Acoustique/Musique (L’Ircam) in Paris, Aalto University in Finland, Tokyo Denki University, the University of Applied Arts in Vienna, and the Norwegian University of Science and Technology. The music section will showcase exhibits from Befaco, PioneerDJ, TribeXR, Teenage Engineering, and more.

Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023

Black Coffee

Sónar+D will host two open forums for discussion. One will explore the intersection of art, science, and technology in collaboration with HacTe, while the other will focus on innovation in the music industry. Two symposia are also scheduled: the International Symposium on Soundscape, Advanced Music & AI in collaboration with the Universitat de Barcelona (UB), and the AI & Web3 Creatives Summit in collaboration with the Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF).
These events will feature numerous experts from diverse fields, including artistic directors from renowned institutions like the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and the European Centre for Nuclear Research (CERN). Representatives from organizations such as the Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology (FECYT), the Barcelona Supercomputing Centre (BSC), the MEET Digital Centre in Milan, and companies like Ableton and SoundCloud will also be present. Additionally, members of the Black Artist Database and Water & Music collectives will contribute to the discussions.

Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023

Photo – courtesy of Solal Cardo © Crystal Murray

This year’s program at Sónar+D revolves around AI, the connections between art, science, and technology, as well as the climate emergency and digital counterculture. Artists like Playmodes, Stefanos Levidis, and Jana Winderen contribute to raising awareness about the climate crisis. Additionally, there will be appearances focusing on digital counterculture and new visual languages on the web, featuring artists like Weirdcore and Parafeno in conversation with Samantha Hudson.

Artificial Intelligence’s Impact on the Arts – the Sónar+D 2023


Sónar+D continues to showcase new musical and technological narratives across its stages, representing artistic experimentation. Notable artists include Kode9, Daito Manabe, Nosaj Thing, Jokkoo Collective, Max Cooper, Oneohtrix Point Never, Desert, CLARAGUILAR, and Ryoji Ikeda. The headliners for Sónar by Night include Aphex Twin and Eric Prydz with the mesmerizing HOLO three-dimensional spectacle.