Paul Abacus

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Paul Abacus is an Internet hoax dating from 2011, a fictional personality that "media artist" Lars Jan now performs as.[1] According to an article on, Paul Abacus is not a real person at all. Paul Abacus "is an invention, a persona created by real-life performance artist Lars Jan and his production company, Early Morning Opera, whose works have been commissioned by the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center, Symphony Space, REDCAT, and the Whitney Museum of American Art."[2]

In October 2010, ABACUS premiered at the inaugural Filament festival at the Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center (EMPAC) in Troy, New York.[3] In September 2011, it was announced that "Paul" was invited to give his presentation in the “New Frontier” program at the 2012 Sundance Film Festival in Park City, Utah [4] to be followed by a series of lectures at REDCAT in Los Angeles in February 2012.[5] In 2014 the Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) invited Abacus to share his presentation for the first time on the East Coast of the United States as part of the fall Next Wave Festival.[1]

The show draws inspiration from the work of polymath R. Buckminster Fuller. An updated version of Fuller's visionary data-visualization device, the Geoscope is utilized to make the argument that we are living near the end of the Screen Age, a historical moment when "the era of nations" will wane.[6]


  1. ^ a b BAM Publicity (May 28, 2014). "Brooklyn Academy of Music (BAM) announces 2014 Next Wave Festival" (PDF). Retrieved August 7, 2014. 
  2. ^ Lars Jan (January 25, 2012). "New Frontiers Presenter Paul Abacus Doesn't Exist. Here's Why.". Retrieved January 25, 2012. 
  3. ^ "Early Morning Opera: ABACUS". Filament Festival. Experimental Media and Performing Arts Center. Retrieved November 3, 2011. 
  4. ^ Marechal, AJ (2011). "Sundance sets New Frontier installation at fest". Variety. Retrieved December 6, 2011. 
  5. ^ Bethany Rickwald (December 20, 2011). "REDCAT Announces 2012 Winter/Spring Season". Retrieved December 29, 2011. 
  6. ^ Paul Abacus (October 30, 2011). "Corporations Now, Nations Next". ABACUS Blog. Retrieved December 29, 2011. 

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