Between October 2012 and January 2013, artists Ben Sadler and Phil Duckworth of Juneau Projects were resident at the Pervasive Media Studio, investigating the artistic possibilities of collaborating with ‘thinking’ machines.  

Represented by London’s Ceri Hand Gallery, Juneau Projects' groundbreaking work involves the use of sculpture, sound, music, projection, animation, and installation. They recently exhibited work in the Tatton Park Biennial and presented a solo show at Site Gallery, Sheffield. Their latest projects examine ideas of technology, nature and possible future scenarios.

For their Residency, Juneau Projects researched various Artificial Intelligence entities to discover ways of using their aesthetic suggestions to help create new artworks. The resulting piece was Bartleby, a robotic drawing arm developed in collaboration with robot specialist Ad Spiers. Bartleby was exhibited as part of Juneau Projects exhibition The Infocalypse Stack at the Ceri Hand Gallery in March 2013, where it produced live drawings on a daily basis.

Juneau Projects say:

"Our residency at Watershed was an exceptional opportunity to explore how technology can inform what we make, rather than being just a tool employed in the process. Meeting robotics specialist Ad Spiers at Pervasive Media Studio has enabled us to take our investigation much further than we had imagined. In just three months we created a bespoke robot that translates drawings given to it and renders them as hand-drawn images. The robot has been programmed to determine its own movement, resulting in a unique emergent drawing style. We are delighted with the results."

Image of the Infocalypse Stack exhibition at the Ceri Hand gallery, London
The Infocalypse Stack  at the Ceri Hand Gallery, London © Juneau Projects 2013

The Project Journal below, which they updated throughout the residency period, shares their process further.

Juneau Projects and fellow residents Geiger-Müller Sound System, were supported by Watershed's Studio Residencies 2012 development programme.

Project blog