Similiar to Tinguely's «Méta-Matics», is "ADA" an artwork with a soul. It acts itself. At Tinguely's it is sufficient to be an unwearily struggling mechanical being. He took it wryly: the machine produces nothing but its industrial self-destruction. Whereas «ADA» by Karina Smigla-Bobinski, is a post-industrial "creature", visitor animated, creatively acting artist-sculpture, self-forming artwork, resembling a molecular hybrid, such as a one from nano biotechnology. It developes the same rotating silicon-carbon-hybrids, midget tools, miniature machines able to generate simple structures.
«ADA» is much larger, esthetical much complexer, an interactive art-making machine. Filled up with helium, floating freely in room, atransparent, membrane-like globe, spiked with charcoals that leave marks on the walls, ceilings and floors. Marks which «ADA» produces quite autonomously, athough moved by a visitor. The globe obtains aura of liveliness and its black coal traces, the appearance of being a drawing . The globe put in action, fabricate a composition of lines and points, which remains incalculable in their intensity, expression, form however hard the visitor tries to control «ADA», to drive her, to domesticate her. Whatever he tries out, he would notice very soon, that «ADA» is an independent performer, studding the originaly white walls with drawings and signs. More and more complicated fabric structure arise. It is a movement exprienced visually, which like a computer make an unforeseeable output after entering a command. Not in vain « ADA» reminds of Ada Lovelace, who in 19th century together with Charles Babbage developed the very first prototype of a computer. Babbage provided the preliminary computing machine, Lovelace the first software. A symbiosis of mathematics with the romantic legacy of her father Lord Byron emmerged there. Ada Lovelace intended to create a machine that would be able to create works of art, such as poetry, music, or pictures, like an artist does. «ADA» by Karina Smigla-Bobinski stands in this very tradition, as well as in the one of Vannevar Bush, who build a Memex Maschine (Memory Index) in 1930 ("We wanted the memex to behave like the intricate web of trails carried by the cells of the brain"), or the Jacquard's loom, that in order to weave flowers and leaves needed a punch card; or the "analytic machine" of Babbage which extracted algorithmic paterns.
«ADA» uprose in nowadays spirit of biotechnology. She is a vital performance-machine, and her paterns of lines and points, get more and more complex as the number of the audience playing-in encreases. Leaving traces which neither the artist nor visitors are able to decipher, not to mention «ADA» herself either. And still, «ADA's» work is unmistakable potentially humane, because the only available decoding method for these signs and drawings , is the association which our brain corresponds at the most when it sleeps: the truculent jazziness of our dreams.
© ADA - analoge interactive installation by Karina Smigla-Bobinski written by Arnd Wesemann
> A Giant Bouncing Ball That Draws On Every Wall It Touches by James Gaddy > Fast Company's Co.Design
"The sculpture's name, Ada, references Ada Lovelace, who, in the 19th century, wrote a series of notes to Charles Babbage about his idea for an “analytical engine."
Some interactive, kinetic sculptures, like Olafur Eliasson’s Weather Project or Roman Ondák’s Measuring the Universe, require the viewer to also help complete it. Others, like AnL Studio’s Lightwave, interact in order to take on anthropomorphic, animated qualities. Well, Karina Smigla-Bobinski’s Ada, an interactive sculpture (...) does both.
The Ada analog interactive installation is a transparent helium balloon about three feet in diameter with 300 charcoal sticks stuck on the balloon, each about 10 inches apart, using a technique that Smigla-Bobinski developed especially for this artwork. What people do when they come into contact with the floating, membrane-looking spiked globe as it floats around the gallery space is where it gets interesting.
In the video above, some people approach the orb gingerly; other times they grab the charcoal sticks like handles and try to bend it to their will. Some people bounce it around like a beach ball at a baseball game. About halfway through, an old man tries to actually draw something, only to have it wrestled away by the laws of physics. Every time it hits the wall, the charcoal scratches its mark along the walls, turning the alien-looking, transparent membrane into an automatic art-making machine. In this, the sculpture references her namesake, Ada Lovelace, who, in the 19th century, wrote a series of notes related to a paper on her friend Charles Babbage’s “analytical engine,” i.e., computer, which they hoped would also make works of art as well.
Smigla-Bobisnki hints that she's fine with not necessarily even knowing the extent of what she's created: “What here is exactly the work of art?" she wrote in an email to me. Ada? Or the drawing on the wall? ... Or both?” What she begins, the audience completes, and the result is an interesting look at the balance of power in what is essentially a rigged collaboration. “Once you set her into motion, she just works away,” Smigla-Bobinski continues. “The blacker she gets from the charcoal and the more she is handled by visitors, the more she seems to be some kind of alive. Even I, who built her, sometimes gets the illusion of her being a living thing.”
> Robots and Avatars Exhibition Review by Josie Jenkins > Art in Liverpool
"The premise for this exhibition lends itself well to interactive art and it was no surprise that the most easily accessible interactive artworks were the most popular with the public. For me, ADA by Karina Smigla-Bobinski, was by far the most fun and clever piece of art I’ve seen for a long time. It is a huge helium filled membrane like globe, with charcoal pieces attached at regular intervals. Referred to as a ‘she’, with her own free will, ADA floats around the room drawing on the walls and ceiling with her charcoal sticks. The viewer can interact with ADA by pushing and spinning her into the walls and together beautiful abstract drawings are created, made up of Cy Twombly style dots and dashes. Some may say the obvious choice, but I think this artwork is truly inspired in concept and practice alike and a must see (or do). (...)"
> Analogue Is the New Digital in 'ADA,' and Interactive Installation by Kasia Cieplak-Mayr von Baldegg > The Atlantic
"ADA is an analogue interactive installation made of a giant ball filled with helium, covered in charcoal spikes. As the ball drifts around the space, charcoal marks accumulate on the walls. Visitors can push the ball around the space freely, but the results are never predictable. (...)"
> ADA-analoge interactive installation by Régine Debatty > we-make-money-not-art.com
"Quick introduction words about the FILE, the Electronic Language International Festival that takes place in São Paulo this Summer. As usual, the event mixes and matches immersive installations, animations movies, performances, machinimas, besides works of web art, documentary, and other goodies you expect from this ambitious new media art festival. This year, however, i've been particularly blown away by the least techy works in the exhibition.
I'll come back to them in the coming days in a more generous report but i'd like to kick off my reports from the festival with a short post about ADA - analog interactive installation, by Karina Smigla-Bobinski. (...)"
> FILE festival - the installations by Régine Debatty > we-make-money-not-art.com
"(...) If you happen to be in or around Sao Paulo this Summer (or Winter, i was told it is Winter over here but super sunny and 25 degrees Celsius is no credible Winter to me) don't miss FILE, the Electronic Language International Festival that takes place at the FIESP Cultural Center and all over the Avenida Paulista till late August. And because FILE makes it its duty to attract the general public and not just the art&tech aficionados, the event is not only free but also packed with surprising installations, games, videos and events. (...) But somehow, i felt that the winners of this edition of FILE were the works showing little or no technology. I already mentioned ADA - analog interactive installation but there were more surprises in store ... Such as Shrink, Lawrence Malstaf's dependable crowd-pleaser. (...)"
> Artist's charcoal-studded helium balloon creates mysterious wall drawings by Olivia Solon > Wired
"Artist Karina Smigla-Bobinski has created an installation comprised of an enormous, helium-filled balloon with a hedgehog-like coating of charcoal sticks trapped inside a room.
The balloon floats around the room, leaving charcoal marks on the white walls as it bounces from wall to wall. The piece, called Ada, is being exhibited at the FILE festival in Sao Paulo. (...) Resembling some sort of molecular hybrid, the transparent globe bobs around the room seemingly autonomously. Visitors can push the sphere around the room and watch it react to the external impetus. (...)"
> ADA, Um Balão De Hélio Criativo by Natasha Felizi > thecreatorsproject.com
"A história de Ada Lovelace comove corações nerds: é mulher; matemática; nobre e, na melhor tradição do ultraromantismo de seu pai, era fraca e doente. Sabemos que ela inventou o primeiro algorítimo para computadores e podemos chamá-la de a namoradinha dos programadores. Não sem justificativa, há muitas homenagens à condessa dos números na produção artístico-tecnológica que costumamos louvar. Exemplos: Ada 2.0b, de Jeraman e ADA analogue interactive installation de Karina Smigla-Bobinski, exposta no FILE. (...)"
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