PIONEER TOWER | Refik Anadol

Refik Anadol (b. 1985) is a media artist and director. Bornin Istanbul, Turkey. He currently lives and works in Los Angeles where he is a lecturer and visiting researcher at UCLA’s Department of Design Media Arts. His works explore the space between digital and physical entities by creating a hybrid relationship between architecture and the media arts using machine intelligence. This connection is exhibited through live audio/visual performance and immersive installations as well as site specific public art using a parametric data sculpture approach.

Refik Anadol Studio was commissioned by the City of Fort Worth to create a new media artwork using 3D mapping projection on the historic 204-foot Pioneer Tower at the Will Rogers Memorial Center in the Cultural District.

Selected based on a proposal titled Pioneer Tower Dreams, the artist seeks to “celebrate the people, places, histories, and dreams of the city that have been woven together through interpersonal and social interactions over the years”. Acknowledging that place and memory are directly linked, Anadol takes into careful consideration the physical environment and key buildings which physicalize the sentiment of home for many.

In order to create a piece that tells Fort Worth’s , archival data is being gathered from key libraries and museums, institutions, and community members.* These memories will contribute to a vast pool of data which will be processed by machine-learning algorithms and transformed into a dreamlike visualization of Fort Worth’s collective memory. Anadol’s work will ultimately explore the consciousness of Fort Worth previously unseen. The final audio/visual performance will be projected onto the façades of Pioneer Tower, becoming a collective performance and journey into the imagination, memories, and dreams of the City of Fort Worth.

He has been given awards, residencies and has served as a guest lecturer. He is the recipient of a number of awards, prizes including Microsoft Research’s Best Vision AwardGerman Design AwardUCLA Art+Architecture Moss AwardUniversity of California Institute for Research in the Arts AwardSEGD Global Design Awards and Google’s Art and Machine Intelligence Artist Residency Award. His site-specific audio/visual performances have been seen in Walt Disney Concert Hall (USA), Hammer Museum (USA), International Digital Arts Biennial Montreal (Canada), Ars Electronica Festival (Austria), l’Usine | Genève (Switzerland), Arc De Triomf (Spain), Zollverein | SANAA’s School of Design Building (Germany), santralistanbul Contemporary Art Center (Turkey), Outdoor Vision Festival SantaFe New Mexico (USA), Istanbul Design Biennial (Turkey), Sydney City Art (Australia), Lichtrouten (Germany)

*During the month of October, Fort Worth residents are invited to participate in the creation of this exciting audio/video artwork through Refik Anadol’s Call for Memories. The artist has created a website ( ) to accept images and/or stories associated with any location in the city.


See projects currently underway by visiting the Art In Progress page.