From 13 to 22 May 2024

Twice a year, Les Culturelles presents events that explore some of the crucial issues facing our world through the arts. Film, performance, sculpture, screenings, debates and concerts are all part of this cultural week.


One of the missions of the College of Humanities is to make the arts an integral part of life at EPFL. That’s why the festival brings artists directly onto campus and invites students to take part in collective, participatory events.

This edition features projects that explore the power of dreams and fiction to build worlds, the enchantment of everyday space, musical creativity with artificial intelligence, the normativity of bodies in the public space, and maintaining a critical mind through the use of AI.

These projects create territories as places of possible resistance, propose creative gestures, and open up perspectives for living in today’s world.

Free entrance to all events ( registration required for some events)

The programme :

18:00 | Forum du Rolex Learning Center
Film screening and conference

Screening of the film The Wonder Way by artist Emmanuelle Antille, an exploration in search of extraordinary territories, terrestrial or celestial paradises, fascinating and uncharted. A timeless journey to meet those who imagine other worlds in this world. With the exceptional participation of Didier Queloz, physicist and winner of the 2019 Nobel Prize in Physics.

CANCELLED | Exterior patio of the RLC
Artistic and technical performance

The weather was bad, so the performance was cancelled !

After a first flight in October 2023, artist Denis Savary and his team of Geneva-based pilots will once again activate the five Roma Roma Roma balloons in the patios of EPFL’s Rolex Learning Center.

12:00 | On the Esplanade
Guided tour

Around twenty sculptures occupy the public spaces of the Campus. Véronique Mauron Layaz, an art historian, invites visitors to (re)discover these works, most of which resonate with the architecture of the buildings constructed since the late 1970s.

Lunch offered to registered people

18:30 | Forum of the Rolex Learning Center
Musical performance

Pianist and composer Richard Rentsch plays a duet with a machine equipped with artificial intelligence. Developed by composer José Miguel Fernandez at IRCAM of Paris, this machine responds by improvisation to the sounds and musical phrases played by the pianist. It will be making its first public concert appearance at EPFL.

The performance will be followed by a round-table discussion with the protagonists of the performance, a researcher and EPFL students.

12:00 | MED Hall
Artistic performance and discussion

Sara Leghissa, an Italian artist based in Milan, presents Muscles, a performance that explores the notions of visibility (and sometimes ultra-visibility) and invisibility of women in the public space. At around 12.30pm, there will be an opportunity to discuss the creative process behind this multi-faceted performance, share impressions and develop a collective reflection.

12:15 – 13:15 | Rolex Learning Center

Philosophical discussion-debate

Unlike search engines, GPT chat and other AIs deliver a single answer with no possible choice. Absolute trust is the order of the day. What are the consequences for our critical faculties? And on our relationship to truth? With Mark Hunyadi, Professor of Social, Moral and Political Philosophy at the Catholic University of Louvain (BE) and Prof. Sabine Süsstrunk, President of the Swiss Science and Innovation Council, Director of the Image and Visual Representation Laboratory at the IC Faculty, EPFL.

> Free access (lunch only on registration wich are now closed)

11:30 – 14:30 | On the campus

Musical performance

Laurent Estoppey, a saxophonist, will improvise his way around the EPFL campus, listening carefully to the soundscapes he passes through. For 3 hours, he will walk in a loop through the alleys of the School. The public can follow him, or simply watch him go by.

The CDH-Culture is piloting this approach, which instils an original musical performance in a stealthy, almost improvised and unspectacular way. At EPFL, art has no specific place; it seeps like a life-giving sap into every possible space, increasing the artistic innervation at the very heart of the study and training facilities.

Organisation: CDH-Culture

Contact: Véronique Mauron