PROBE I, Averso Specillo Di Ducendum

2019

The PROBE I or VERSE SPECILLO DI DUCENDUM, is the first of a series of investigations on the speculative future of space exploration, colonization and discovery through the employment of post-planetary machine life. 

PROBE I, is an AI-driven interactive mechanical sculpture that presents a version of the artist’s imagination of post-planetary machine life.  Inspired by the Panspermia hypotheses (the theory that life on the earth originated from microorganisms or chemical precursors of life present in outer space and able to initiate life on reaching a suitable environment), the installation speculates on a future where conscious machines can bare the trials of space travel to investigate hostile environments of terrestrial planets. The piece takes on the perspective of alien machine life forms as they observe, document, and analyze the strange phenomenons of life on earth.

 

The installation tracks human and object data in the immediate space around it, including presence and movement, and feeds this data back into a machine learning program framework developed by the artist that analyzes and stores said data into a database.

This database can then potentially be used by future artists to develop data-driven work, where art generates new art, much in tune with the panspermia perspective of life regeneration.

This work was commissioned and collected by UNArt Center in Shanghai, China in 2019. 

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Probe 001 - Shanghai UNArt - 16 - Benjam
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Images of the life size Probe 001 at the UNArt Center, Shanghai, China. 2019.

Machine generated heat

map displayed here in

this strip of flex LED

that encompasses the

installation.

Video of machine learning generated heat map based on data collected of Probe surroundings.

This heat map is displayed on the flex LED interface at the middle section of the installation. 

3D models of the internal workings of PROBE 001. 2019.

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The probe was designed to be life size so that the installation can easily capture the visitors who interact with, as shown in this diagram. The final installation stands at a little over 2m tall.

Archival footage taken of early tests with the machine

learning module on the streets of Berlin.