Crimes of Futility No. 7: The ArtistMachine
1. All human beings ever seem to achieve in this world is to move stuff around. Or, to put it another way, everything we do ends up as landfill sooner or later.
2. In the 18th Century the great Jaquet-Droz made an automaton which could scrawl its own name on a piece of paper. According to some contemporary sources it also wrote "cogito ergo sum..."
This video was made at the private view of "Sentient Cog" at the 5th @ Guinness Storehouse in Dublin in 2002 - it had a free Guiness bar and drew a crowd of over 500! It was installed again in Nottingham in 2003 as part of the “Sensitive Skin” Live art festival.
It consisted of a mechanism which drew a crayon circle on a roll of paper for roughly ten minutes; the drawing process then stopped, a facsimilie signature was stamped under the image and the roll of paper advanced, moving the “work” to a position on the front of the machine where it was “exhibited” for the next phase of the cycle. Meanwhile the drawing that had previously occupied that position is pulled into a shredder and the resulting residue blown out of a vent by a powerful fan. Over the period of the installation, the shredded paper piles up to form a kind of “snowdrift” - arguably the final “product” of the machine’s activity.