descriptions of works

descriptions of works


Maciej Markowski
mute sound sculpture

A piece played through speakers hanging in a vacuum chamber. As an acoustic conductor is missing, sound waves do not propagate, and, consequently, the composition is inaudible. In such conditions, sound can only be experienced visually, based on the movements of the speakers and the deflection of the decibel metre pointers. In this way, the definition of a musical composition as a phonic work is negated, as is the identity of a music piece turned mute sound sculpture.

The title 340.3 refers to the velocity of sound propagation in the air (as expressed in metres per second), which is missing in the installation.

Big Dipper
Michael Candy
kinetic light sculpture

The Big Dipper is a name of a constellation. This installation captures two key elements for the representation of stars as the origin of life and matter in the Universe in a material and analogue way.

The movement of the installation is based on a mechanism that works on the principle of a helical line, forming a helix – a three-dimensional spiral, reminiscent of the DNA chain, the basis of life as we know it.

As the helix moves, it forms a wave – a shape that is one of the tools with which physics describes matter and light – as perceived by the human eye.

presented form Dec 8, 2023
Vitalina Louis Mahomedova, Miłosz Zużewicz
interactive installation

An interactive sound installation for collaborative playing and composing. It uses the ability of our bodies to conduct signals, and its full potential and scale of sounds can only be discovered in collaboration with others.

Walk up to the bright pedestal. Touch both tiles to trigger the first sound.
Without taking your hand off the framed tile, touch the tiles at subsequent pedestals to activate other sounds.
To reach further pedestals, work together with other people and hold hands.

People with pacemakers should not interact with this installation.

presented untill Nov 24, 2023
Emanuel Gollob
algorithm-controlled video sequences

brief description

A robotic limb, detached from a human-constructed technological body, tries to find concepts for advancing movements even though it initially wasn’t made for locomotion – vulnerable yet determined.

Locomotion can be seen as a primal (post-birth) instinct and the ultimate act of independence.

Parallel to a familiar dystopian plot of technological autonomy and the feelings going with it, witnessing these first clumsy tries may awaken compassion or even a certain emotional bond.

The work playfully explores the ambiguity of disarming as a process of physical detachment and emotional attachment, and a relation between detached robot arms, artificial environments, and human observers. It looks for potential future roles of robotics and AI in our society.

elaborate description

disarming is a performative exploration of the relationship between detached robot arms, artificial environments, and human observers, as well as a search for potential future roles of robotics & AI in our society. In the context of a vast development in artificial intelligence and its integration with robotics, Emanuel sees it necessary to investigate alternative roles and relations of AI-driven robotics within our society and the ecosystem at large. Simply applying the known models of assistant, dog, fortune cookie, tool, or live-threatening humanoid might not be sufficient, differentiated alternatives are required. For Emanuel, this search for new conceptual embeddings of industrial robotics goes along with the process of detachment from the notion of an extension to a human-constructed technological body, in the case of industrial robotic arms, also referenced in its name.

Picking up the industry’s narrative of making robotic systems more autonomous with machine learning, disarming features a robotic limb utilizing reinforcement machine learning to learn how to locomote and, by doing so, physically distances itself from the status quo and trying to get rid of its connotation as an arm. Besides elements of dialogic interaction, disarming largely builds upon the concept of intra-action. According to intra-action, the human observers and robotic entity do not preexist the interaction but are continuously performed in it.

The first iteration of disarming was situated in a fallow cornfield. A seemingly natural habitat, which, when looking closer, embraces one of the oldest cultivation techniques, the breeding of corn, with its own technological, mythical, and ecological history. In this next stage developed within Emanuel´s European Media Art Platform (EMAP) residency at the WRO Art Center, Emanuel is questioning this choice and experimenting with different contextual narratives & human roles within the search – from seemingly passive intra-actants to performers and audience members actively learning, and unlearning with robotic limbs. The outcome of Emanuel’s residency project is planned as three possible variations: as a performance of an AI-driven robotic arm & a human performer, as continuously learning robotic installation open to audience interaction, and as continuously learning video installation.

The currently exhibited iteration of disarming fuses physical acting with digital observation and vice versa. The same Reinforcement Learning (RL) algorithm learning physical locomotions with the robotic body in the video footage now observes how likely recent social media postings mention “robot” and “arm” in the same post. In reference to this observation, the RL algorithm is set to continuously learn and unlearn how to narrate the video scenes to decrease this human tendency.