Day and night, inside our homes and in the outside world, on earth and in the sky, we live with and among machines of all kind, our memory is becoming artificial, our footprints tend to be only electronic, our identity is partly digital. Robots, machines, computers in the shape of cars or cell phones, touch-sensitive (what else ?!) screens that children use naturally, interactive terminals and automatic vending-machines, RFID tags, bar codes, monitoring devices, flash codes, geotracking of people and things, online avatars... Every day we interact with numerous machines, some of them automatic, most of them electronic, a few of them would be thinking-machines. All of them reflecting our choices, our actions and our tastes.
In January 2011, I met MAYWA DENKI, and it all began. These contemporary Japanese artists playfully evolve in a wonderful world of living objects: low-tech, nonsense and refinement are keywords. Then I met NAO, the humanoid robot, and everything took shape. I suddenly felt like staging the relationships between human bodies and artificial ones. Where are the borders between ‘us’ and ‘them’ ? Can the most sophisticated machines stand in for the Man-Nature relationship ? Will the robots be capable of integrating the idea of creation one day ? As we teach them to become more and more complex, how will they complement our life ? What kind of society will arise from it? The machines are impacting our daily routines more and more. What will happen when thinking machines understand data, concepts, and behaviour too complex for humans to grasp? If the robots get humanised by shape and communication skills, shall we humans become robotised hybrids or androids ? Can a machine, even an evolved one, replace relationships to the living ? Will our rebotic alter egos express fellings some day ? What would society be like then ? Will they be a refletion of what humanity uncousciously wants to represent ? As robots are looking more and more like men, will men be looking like robots, hybrids, androids ?
I will tackle these questions in a choreography for 8 dancers whose movements will trigger the Maywa Denki nonsense musical devices. The appearance of a few NAO will be far from a trivial detail: it will carry the interchangeability of men and machines to extremes.
Man-machines, electromechanical automatons, electronic robots : 3 kinds of relationship to the world, 3 evolutionary stages ? The show will present 3 ways of exploring the interactions between them, in an absurd and poetic way.