>> Saturday, January 10, 2009
we just had dinner with the wonderful richard woodbury pell (and his talented partner melissa st. pierre. an album of hers is here on boomkat. i don't know her as well so this post will be about rich's work...)
rich is a founding member of the institute for applied autonomy and the creator of some of my favorite artworks, like the graffiti robot(pictured above) and isee. they are purveyors of "contestational robotics" and "electronic civil disobedience". charming folks, overall. rich also plays a mean bowed guitar and runs a small record label (link pending).
the history as far as i am aware is that these folks were working shitty jobs for various DARPA funded projects at CMU and decided they could use their badass technological skills to pull off way better shit. that might be a myth, but it's the origin story i know.
the graffiti writer is amazing. it writes dot-matrix graffiti on the ground (click for large size above) at 15 miles per hour. they once wrote "voting is futile" across the u.s. senate steps and even though the police noticed them, they got away with it, because they assumed that because they had a robot, they had permission (!) video of the little guy in action is here in this short video (.mov 28mb)
rich also made a moving video about a crazy (?) guy in pittsburgh called "don't call me crazy on the 4th of july". it's about mind control, true history, crazy people and real whistle-blowers... watch it (a gripping ~30 min.)...
also, DO NOT MISS the video they made "little brother get's busted". it played in the netherlands at a show we did together in 2001 in between sets of bizarre feedback music my pal jim and i made (wayback machine, thank you!).
no, seriously... don't miss little brother gets busted...it's an "educational film" made for the dutch tourist to america and is HILARIOUS: