A New Kind of Global Community: How UNFINISHED Leverages Culture To Reinvent the Gathering Experience

Mihai-Alexandru Cristea 19/10/2021 | 16:50

Applications to join the one-week-long multidisciplinary experience UNFINISHED are closing on October 20th, 2021 at midnight. Midnight, that is, wherever you are!


This year, UNFINISHED Festival is launching a permanent experience platform that combines new ways of connecting with art, music, happenings, and conversations around the theme of Midnight. The 50+ speakers, artists and musicians it gathers from all over the world explore the many emergencies we are facing, the minutes we no longer have, as well as the poetry and transformation such a moment demands.

Attendance to the festival is based on UNFINISHED’s unique pay-with-your-time model. Apply here to join the community from anywhere in the world.

The UNFINISHED festival is built around a community of creative, like-minded individuals that gather from over 60 countries. The underlying values of the festival are the binding force between each member. Curious, multidisciplinary and enthusiastic to explore new perspectives are the central elements of this community. Encounters in the festival usually resemble the feeling of meeting an old friend rather than a stranger, and the willingness to give is, more often than not, always present. 

UNFINISHED’s program is uniquely crafted to enhance its community’s daily life over 8 days. Starting on Sunday October 24th, the festival is designed to accompany participants until Sunday October 31st, interweaving their routine with a carefully curated mix of on-demand content, live events, and connected experiences.

Every UNFINISHED morning starts with wellness, ranging from yoga and qi-gong to meditation, in partnership with Wanderlust TV. Meal times are shared with the grande dame of eating design, Marije Vogelzang, through a seven-part series of Edible Philosophy. Participants can also meet for lunch, dinner, or coffee, sitting together at virtual tables in the café. Afternoons feature a brief conversation to break the workday, and a series of daily soundwalks created by DJ and music curator Alexis Charpentier, all accessible according to participants’ timezones.

Evenings at UNFINISHED gather the entire community around content to be experienced live, starting with a weeklong program of musical conversations opened by the Beirut-based Wanton Bishops, continuing with Brazilian bands, musicians and collectives Avuá, BABY, MACUL, and Francisco El Hombre, Helsinki-based multidisciplinary cellist Sergio Castrillon, British singer-songwriter Tatiana DeMaria, and Romanian cobza player and musician Bogdan Simion. The festival’s talks and conversations line up international speakers from writers Tim Urban, Douglas Ruhskoff and Virgine Raisson, experience designers Ida Benedetto and Jason Eppink, community organizer Jessica Hartzell, cultural entrepreneurs Tracey Ryans and Lionel Bensemoun, philosopher Marie Robert, filmmakers Eugene Jarecki and Boris Hars-Tschachoti, psychoanalyst Maria Homem, cyborg artists Neil Harbisson and Pol Lombarte, data scientist Dionna McPhatter and Chris Wiggins, Conservation Carpathia founders Barbara and Christoph Prombergerer, artists Sebastian Errazurriz and Christoph Niemann, mathematician Lê Nguyên Huang, mixologist Néli Pereira, wine expert Marinela Ardelean, people-centred researcher Tamika Abaka-Wood, monk and counselor Brother Fulfillment, computer scientists Deborah Raji, and the team behind Low-Tech Lab, amongst others.

Journalists – and more! – join the community’s Poetry Hour every day for an exclusive livestream of their news-reading habits and artist Alfredo Jaar analyses key images of the press through his week-long project Hearing Images. A Midnight Moment, finally, closes each day by featuring Modern Love stories, read by actress Ana Ularu, in partnership with The New York Times.


AN UNFINISHED JOURNEY | Looking back at 5 years of UNFINISHED Festival

In light of UNFINISHED’s goal to enrich content with context, relationship economy expert Jerry Michalski is launching a story-threading initiative, in collaboration with artist Emma Schmidt. Seven illustrators are also joining the movement to contribute to a collective hourly comic project to document their experience of the festival, including Tuan Nini, Luiz Stockler, Irina Șelaru, Ionuț Rădulescu, Simina Popescu, Ing Lee, and Jeremy Nguyen.

The UNFINISHED platform, created in collaboration with [ Flow ] OS and hosted on Sessions, is uniquely crafted to simultaneously adapt to each participant’s timezone while also gathering the community around key live moments across the world.

UNFINISHED, the first multidisciplinary festival in Romania, was created in 2016 by the EIDOS Foundation as a constantly evolving learning experience. It is excited to launch its sister projects, UNFINISHED Future and UNFINISHED ThinkTank, on the occasion of #UNFINISHED21 this year.

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