V&A Presents Cold War Modern Friday 31 October 2008 Join us for an evening to celebrate the exhibition, Cold War Modern: Design 1945–1970. Cybersonica and Cybersalon showcase an evening of progressive electronic music and audiovisual performance, accessible interactive and digital art, thought-provoking screenings and classic and contemporary gaming.
In more detail:Stanza: Robotica – Control Inside the Panopticon. Gallery 47f or Sackler. 18.30-21.45
The idea of the Panopticon originated with the English utilitarian philosopher Jeremy Bentham – as a prison design that would allow an observer to monitor all the prisoners at all times without any prisoner being aware of whether he was being monitored or not.
Twelve robots – each identified with a prison inmate number – roam freely on a canvas on the floor. These robotic prisoners are sent out across the canvas with small tasks to complete. Police “barrier tape” keeps the robots inside their controlled space. The robots are tracked – everything is watched and recorded since each robot wears a wireless CCTV camera – and shown on a monitor as a record of the event.
Like people, robots have common ‘modes’ and can be programmed to demonstrate social behaviour. The robots mimic and trace the patterns people make based on algorithms – but unlike people their movements can be networked into retrievable data structures that it can be re-imagined and sourced for information.
The digital patterns of the robots are re-made as analogue patterns. The robot path is in effect replaced with a series of ‘brushes’ – and it is these that are wandering around the canvas. Their “wanderings” over the evening are captured onto the canvas. They create their own robotic generative paintings in their own little prison.