For three nights, over the 3 – 5 July 2008, large pogo-ing robots came to punk gigs in the ICA theatre!
Fiddian Warman, artist/researcher working with SMARTlab in the fields of robotics and performance (also the subject of his practice-based PhD) and is best known internationally as founder and Managing Director of Soda performed his show ‘Neurotic And The Punk Voice Choir, which questioned how learning develops through the empathetic responses of the brain.
He played the punk records he collected as a young man to his robots, programming them to become punks just like he was. Each night they were tested – did the mechanical moshpit react with pleasure to the live music they’ve been brought up to love? How was taste embodied in human neurons and artificial neural networks?
Fiddian fronted the band Neurotic and the PVCs with tracks written especially for the robots with support band Fumadores, Gertrude, The Red Eyes, Viva Las Vegas, Scrotum Clamp and The Devil’s Hotpants.
The scientific and cultural issues related to Neurotic are explored on a website and open forum at http://www.fiddian.com