Club Automatique (2000-2002)

French artist David Dronet has described Club Automatique, in which he himself was involved, as “a kind of party with content”. Other members of the group were Van-Gogh-TV-member and Piazza virtuale-organizer Mike Hentz, as well as former participants in Piazza virtuale: Gérard Couty, Rotraut Pape and Jacques Bigot, joined by Christopher Müller and Michel Piet. Three events, which could last up to 12 hours, merged party, food, performances, music and video. The first event took place in 1997 under the title Parahouse and Club Automatique as part of the Ostranenie festival in Dessau, where Piazetta-Ljubliana-organizer Marko Košnik, Christian Graupner and Monika Glahn were involved. Other shows too place in Slovenia as guests of the hEXPO festival in 2000 (hosted by Marko Košnik), at the art centre in Hérouville-Saint-Clair in 2001 (hosted by STATION MIR) and in Yogikarta in Indonesia in 2002 (hosted by HONF and the Yogyakarta – Institut Français Indonesia).

Reminiscent of Piazza virtuale is the approach of connecting different locations via video stream, which was already possible at that time via the internet and no longer required complex satellite technology. In Slovenia, for example, venues in Ljubliana, Maribor and Koper were connected to each other and performed together. Another parallel to Piazza virtuale and other projects by Mike Hentz was the interest of the organisers in involving local students as well as artists from the respective places.