Manuel Rossner (* 1989) lives and works in Berlin. He studied art at the University of Art and Design Offenbach, the École des Arts-Décoratifs Paris and the Tongji College for Design and Innovation Shanghai.

Since 2012, Rossner has been designing digital spaces and virtual worlds in which he investigates the effects of technological developments on society and art. He builds interactive architecture with digital materials that are spatial interventions and virtual extensions.

From June to November 2021 Rossner participates in the group show “Out of Space” at Hamburger Kunsthalle. The exhibition focuses on the notion of space in the work of artists such as Dan Graham, Gordon Matta-Clark and Charlotte Posenenske. Rossner created the site specific virtual reality installation “How Did We Get Here?” for the exhibition. The artwork will become the first NFT (Non Fungible Token) in the permanent collection of the museum.

For the Grand Palais Éphemère in Paris Rossner created the artwork “Where to Go from Here?”. It’s shown where multiple world exhibitions took place and where the Eiffel Tower, one of the most recognizable steel structures in the world, was built from 1887 to 1889.

Rossner’s site-specific augmented reality experience questions the future of technology. Its sleek aesthetic, the “signature of the present” (Byung Chul-Han), represents the digital age in which speed, flexibility and gamification are idealized.

Experience an Exhibition Like Never Before.

About Surprisingly This Rather Works

Rossner uses digital exhibition rooms as so-called ‘gyms’ in which he trains artificial intelligence. In his solo exhibition, “There’s No Feeling, Where There’s No Pain” (2019) at the Museum der Bildenden Künste Leipzig, the AI ​​learned to walk and follow a ball. His 2020 exhibition, “Surprisingly This Rather Works” in the KÖNIG GALERIE shows objects which form an AI training course. The digital visitor can then experience the course through an avatar. Rossner transforms the brutalist Church of St. Agnes into a gaming environment inspired by the 1990s game show “American Gladiators” and gyms that companies like OpenAI in San Francisco use for cutting-edge research in the field of artificial intelligence. He explores the question of what life will look like in the future with artificial intelligence.

Further solo and group exhibitions: “Perception is Reality” at the Frankfurter Kunstverein (2017), “Ultralight Beam” at the 1822-Forum Frankfurt (2017), “Artificial Paradise?” at KM – Künstlerhaus Graz (2018), “Virtual Natives – Sculpture” at Roehrs & Boetsch in Zurich, “Analog Digital”, Safiental Biennale (2020).

Selected exhibitions

Teaching, Workshops & Residencies

  • Lecturer at Universität der Künste Berlin
  • Host of a master class at Filmuniversität Babelsberg together with Prof. Frank Geßner
  • Voice Interaction Workshop, Junges Staatstheater Berlin
  • The Eternal Internet Brother/Sisterhood
    Sigiriya, Sri Lanka
  • Ten To Six Workshop FH Bielefeld 
  • Captcha Mannheim, Design Festival 
  • How to Water — A Slow Performance, Serifos Island, Greece
  • L’exposition numérique comme œuvre d’art École national supérieur des Beaux-Arts, Paris 

Talks & Conferences

Press & Publications

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