The Future of Intimacy
May 6, 2016 at 18:00
Säulenhalle MAK Vienna

Event recap

Everybody knows social media can be creepy. But lately it seems it’s getting a little too intimate with us, calling us by our first names and channelling embarrassing memories into our feeds. The Internet enticed us to move our lives online, promising an end to isolation. Since its inception it has demystified sexuality for millions of people. So now we can access love and intimacy at our fingertips. And technology is only going to continue to take intimacy to a whole new level in the future. As we continue the quest for augmenting our existence, virtual reality holds the promise of lifelike experiences without the need of actual physical presence. Virtual romantic partners like Samantha in the movie “Her” are poised to be a reality. In fact, new apps like Alice AI or Invisible Boyfriend are already out there, sending you loving texts like a real partner might. It gets even edgier, with futurists predicting that in just 10 to 15 years we will have robots that look and feel incredibly like us, robots we can cuddle and even have sex with. It’s obvious that these developments directly impact our evolution.

But can emerging science and technology defeat loneliness? How will interhuman relationships evolve in this context? Are we seeing the collapse of the institution of marriage? Is the potential for sexual education still unexplored? How is our psyche responding to all these changes? Can we find real intimacy amid shifting identities and permanent surveillance?

We want to invite you to an evening of questioning current developments and envisioning The Future of Intimacy.


Dan Chen

Dan Chen

Designer & Engineer (USA)

Dan Chen is a designer and engineer. Working in the realms of robotics and interaction design, Dan explores the new ways of communication and human experience through mix medium, inviting a reflective evaluation & implication.

Yana Tallon-Hicks

Yana Tallon-Hicks

Sex Educator (USA)

Yana Tallon-Hicks is a pleasure-positive sex writer & educator who teaches consent-based sex education & sexual pleasure workshops. Her sex writing is widely published and can be found weekly in her sex column, the V-Spot.

Ghislaine Boddington

Ghislaine Boddington

Body Technologist (UK)

Ghislaine is the Creative Director at body>data>space, as well as an artist and thought leader. She is advocating the use of the body as a digital interaction canvas. This year Ghislaine is curating the Future Love theme for Nesta’s FutureFest.

Amy Adele Hasinoff

Amy Adele Hasinoff

Media Researcher (USA)

Amy Adele Hasinoff researches how and why we view new communication technologies as both the cause of and solution to social problems. She wrote a book on the media, legal, and educational responses to sexting.

Toon Timmermans

Toon Timmermans

Teledildonics Pioneer (NL)

Toon Timmermans is the CEO of Kiiroo, an innovative tech company founded in 2013 which has developed a unique technology to get intimate online through a social platform, mobile app and a set of interactive toys. These devices enable both men and women to experience real-time physical interaction.

Himanshu Giri

Himanshu Giri

Trainee Psychoanalyst (AT)

Himanshu Giri is a trainee psychoanalyst based at an outpatient clinic in Vienna. He works with people from diverse cultural backgrounds who have difficulties with intimate relationships and other psychological problems.

Wendy Williams

Wendy Williams

Author (CAN/AT)

Wendy is the author of The Globalisation of Love, a book about multicultural romance and marriage. Through personal interviews, Wendy explores the whirls and twirls, the quirks and perks, the frustrations and the fun of multicultural relationships.

Sharon Booth

Sharon Booth

Dance Performer (CAN)

Within the realm of dance, touch, honesty and intimacy each play a huge role. Professional dancers Sharon & Alberto Franceschini create connections between each other, the audience and these roles to speak the language of physicality that we all innately share.


18:00 Registration & Interactive Experiences
18:45 Session 1
           Wendy Williams
           Himanshu Giri
           Recorded TED Talk
           Dan Chen
           Performance by Sharon Booth
20:00 Break & Interactive Experiences

21:00 Session 2
           Amy Adele Hasinoff
           Yana Tallon-Hicks
           Toon Timmermans
           Ghislaine Boddington
22:30 Closing
23:00 Afterparty @ RED ROOM (Stubenring 20) DJs:
           Blondage & Mo 2000
           Precious K & Roman Rauch
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Exhibitors & Interactive Experiences

Ing Diba

#Moneysecrets by ING-DiBa. There are still loads of #moneysecrets in this world and our pockets. ING-DiBa will explore this intimate topic with you interactively! Check out their booth, get involved and win your ticket to the next TEDxVienna conference in October!


OMGYes. Let’s demystify women’s sexual pleasure. New research shows that there are actually ways that most women intensify orgasm. Try them all in hyper-realistic touchscreen simulations and experience the different ways women give feedback to guide their partners!


Social VR by VREI. Is VR the key to the future of our quality time? A new study suggests that 50 per cent of couples will meet online within the next 20 years. Virtual reality is set to revolutionize the way people meet and engage digitally. Supported by VREI, you can try the first VR social network and interact live with people from all over the world!

UPC Business

UPC Lounge. UPC connects people online everyday - Connect in person at the UPC Lounge, exchange your exciting experiences with other attendees or share them with a virtual counterpart!


Virtual Narcissism by MRTN. New media and visual artist Martina Menegon invites you to an intimate dialogue to establish a relationship between your physical and virtual body. In “Virtual Narcissism“ she creates a virtual tableau made of 3D scans of herself seeking to explore the concepts of intimacy, sexuality, loneliness, and identity crises in our digital era.

Smiletronic & Zipcar

Smiletronic & Zipcar. What happens in the back of a car...gets captured forever! Zipcar, the world’s largest car sharing service, and Smiletronic invite you to take a seat in a Zipcar. Get comfortable and snap your intimate moments with friends, lovers, and strangers alike.

What makes a TEDxVienna conference a world-class event?

TEDxVienna talks

Experience live TEDx talks firsthand.
Watch previous talks.

  • 7 speakers + 1 performance
  • Innovative fields
  • New insights

Interactive Experiences

Interactive experiences and innovations on display at the exhibition area.

  • Try new technologies
  • Talk to the industry
  • Discover innovations

The Community

Meet local and visiting innovators, from technology, entertainment, design, and a host of other exciting fields.

  • Networking
  • Food and drinks
  • After Party
  • "Porn isn’t just porn. Porn is actually a discourse – a discourse about sexuality, about masculitiny, about femininity, about the roles we play."

    "It's time for porn to change"
    Erika Lust, TEDxVienna 2014

    See all talks

Frequently Asked Questions

What if I want to cancel my ticket?

Unfortunately, you can't, but you can transfer it to somebody else. Please send us the name and email of the person you want to transfer it to with the email you used to buy your ticket(s) until April 29.

What if I want to do more than listen to TEDx Talks?

We have inspiring and amazing exhibitors, delicious local food and drinks, networking opportunities, and did we mention that the event is in the beautiful MAK museum?

What if I don't want to stay seated for 4 hours?

That's totally okay. TEDxViennaSalon 2016 features two sessions of talks, each of which are about 90 minutes long. But you can come and go anytime.

What if I get hungry or thirsty?

No problem at all! We’ll make sure your focus is on great ideas and not your rumbling stomach. You’ll be able to enjoy a tasty selection of snacks and refreshments at no additional cost.

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    Tickets & Benefits

    With your TEDxViennaSalon attendee badge you can get MAK Vienna tickets at a reduced price:
    8.00€ instead of 9.90€ for the regular admission
    or 6.00€ instead of 7.50€ for the reduced admission.
    This offer is valid until May 31, 2016.

    • Tickets include

        TEDxVienna talks

      Experience live TEDx talks firsthand.

        Exhibition area

      Interactive experiences and innovations on display.


      Meet local and visiting innovators, from technology, entertainment, design, and a host of other exciting fields.

        Food and drinks

      The perfect way to complement the brain food we provide, feast on imaginative meals from resourceful local providers.

        After Party

      Celebrate a successful event with good music and drinks @ RED ROOM (Stubenring 20) from 23:00.


    October 22, 2016.

    Tickets now available

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    Venue addressMAK - Österreichisches Museum für
    angewandte Kunst / Gegenwartskunst
    Stubenring 5
    1010 Wien

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