Interspecies and Random/Electronic-Poetry. From “Black on Sheep” (Bovine poem) to “Robot-poem@s”

Description (in English): 

This presentation will explore random e-poetry and interspecies based on two electronic works: one that intersect humanity and insect-like robotics titled “Robot-poem@s”, and an eproject/poem based on a performance with sheep: “Negro en ovejas/Black on Sheep.” Robotpoem@s consist of insect-like robots (five quadrupeds and a bigger hexapod) whose legs and bodies are engraved with the seven parts of a poem written from the robot’s point of view in bilingual format (Spanish and English). Binary constructs such as creator/creature are questioned by these creatures purposely chosen from open-source models resembling insects and spiders, thus emphasizing anxiety and removal from humans while underlying the already problematic relation between humans and technology. The final segment of the poem, number VII, rephrases the biblical pronouncement on the creation of humans, as perceived by the robot: “According to your likeness / my Image.” With this statement, the notion of creation is reformulated and bent by the power of electronics, ultimately questioning its binary foundations. An interface to explore these robopoem@s can be found at (requires Flash): This interface shows the original quadrupeds with options for listening to the poems in three different languages (English, Spanish and Chinese), interacting with 3-D models of the quadrupeds, and experiencing Augmented Reality components triggered by the panels that served as matrix of the robot-poets. On the other hand, “Negro en ovejas” is a digital “ovine poem” which intersects words and sheep in an interactive poetic project that allows random poetry as created by the sheep as they graze in the pasture, a performance enhanced and extended to the possible variants created by a digital interface: This project includes, therefore, various levels of poetic action and interaction. First there is the process of constructing the text, the base-poem formed by words which have meaning in and of themselves, but also acquire new meanings by contacting with other words (the noun “Sol” - “Sun”- and the verb “Es” -“Is”- become the plural “Soles” -“Suns”- through proximity or contact). Once the written pieces are constructed, they are assigned to sheep who will freely form poems in a performance of movements and bleating which will become its own entity. Finally, when the event is transferred to the digital artefact, any web surfer can access and reproduce the process in a cybernetic interaction and in an exchange which affords them creative authorship: the web user, just like the sheep, creates the poetic experience, joining forces with  the sheep as well. The presentation of the interface at ELO2019 would potentially capture some of the verses in a suggestion and proposal of new interactive dimensions. Both e-lit projects allow for a questioning of binaries and media-assumptions based on electronics, interspecies and random poetry.

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Record posted by: 
Vian Rasheed