Inflatable Architecture Intervention

© MacMurtrie/ARW

Inflatable Architecture Intervention (IAI) is a growing robotic exoskeleton carrying and controlling a human passenger and engaging with the architecture through a site-specific performance.

IAI is a large-scale robotic sculpture and a interactive performance that explores the invisible molecular structure of the human body on a magnified scale. The molecule patterns, represented by a network of fabric tubes which are animated with compressed air, grow into a colossal geometric orb inverting the scale between the body and its inner architecture. When fully inflated IAI encapsulates the human passenger and lifts his/her body up in the air. Trapped in this gigantic structure, the human passenger experiences the weightlessness of travel through time and space.

Inflatable Architecture Intervention fuses MacMurtrie’s recent investigations of inflatable soft robotic sculpture with his earlier performance work to explore the relationship between art and technology. MacMurtrie has pioneered the use of high tensile tedlar fabric to create innovative inflatable sculpture able to approximate the qualities of soft tissue within a muscle and bone relationship.

This performance intends to create a thought provoking dialogue between art and technology in a soft robotic environment that activates both the space and the performer. As the tubes inflate with air, the exoskeleton grows into an ever-changing kinetic architecture around the performer. He or she responds with improvisational movements to the robotic environment and engages in a momentary but profound experience of unity between Human and Machine.