Therme Art Program


DRIFT Artists Lonneke Gordijn and Ralph Nauta

Dutch artists Lonneke Gordijn (b. 1980, Netherlands) and Ralph Nauta (b. 1978, Netherlands) founded studio DRIFT in 2007. With a multidisciplinary team of 64, they work on experiential sculptures, installations, and performances.

DRIFT manifests the phenomena and hidden properties of nature with the use of technology in order to learn from the earth’s underlying mechanisms and to re-establish our connection to it. With both depth and simplicity, DRIFT’s works of art illuminate parallels between man-made and natural structures through deconstructive, interactive, and innovative processes. The artists raise fundamental questions about what life is and explore a positive scenario for the future. All individual artworks have the ability to transform spaces.

DRIFT has realised numerous exhibitions and projects around the world. Their work has been exhibited at Victoria & Albert Museum; Met Museum; Stedelijk Museum; UTA Artist Space; Garage Museum; Mint Museum; Biennale di Venezia; Pace Gallery amongst others. Their work is held in the permanent collections of the LACMA; Rijksmuseum; SFMOMA; Stedelijk Museum; and Victoria & Albert Museum. In 2014, DRIFT was awarded the Arte Laguna Prize, Venice.

DRIFT have recognised an essential piece of our curatorial philosophy: the ‘white cube’ provided in museums and galleries does not do art the justice it deserves and requires to fully unfold it’s potential. Their work thrives in the public space, interwoven into architecture, living alongside people, inviting them to reconnect with the underlying mechanisms of the Earth; re-connect, re-establish, illuminate through interaction and innovation. DRIFT’s ability to transform space with depth and simplicity creates work that everyone connects towards in an innate and primal way.


Franchise Freedom is a performative artwork at the interface between technology, science, and art. Mimicking the natural movement and flight patterns of starlings in massive flocks, an autonomous, luminous swarm of drones flies through the sky in patterns generated by an algorithm that reacts in ways similar to starling murmuration. Each drone also has a light source, and the distance between the drones influences the lights’ intensities and colours. Franchise Freedom is the first ever imitation of a natural phenomenon by machines working with decentralised algorithms at this scale.

Franchise Freedom LTD is a joint venture between Therme Group, Pace and artist duo DRIFT. It establishes the shared ownership and commitment over Franchise Freedom, a flying sculpture of drones created by Studio Drift. Through the newly founded company, the three entities plan to support the development, operation, and exhibition of the work long-term and present it in locations around the world.

Read more on this collaboration:

Franchise Freedom LTD

Aurora Institute’s Evening of Discovery

Luisaviaroma x UNICEF


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