Self Portrait as the Center of the Universe
silicone, pigments, fiberglass, steel, software, ventriloquist puppets, computers, electronics
algorithmic cinema and digital audio
installation dimensions variable
(central head is lifesize)

video clip

Self Portrait as the Center of the Universe takes up and extends the themes of Séance Box No. 1 (1998-99). The self-portrait animatronic head has open-ended, improvisational conversations with its alter ego, a virtual head that appears as the central figure in the projection. Like If/Then, the conversations between these two figures do not include the audience; rather, they interact only with each other. Their conversations are generated in real time, utilizing speech recognition, natural language processing, conversation/personality algorithms, and text-to-speech software. The physical side of the conversation is performed by an animatronic figure (a speaking silicone cast of my head) and the central subjects of their conversations revolve around, on one side - generalization and distance; and on the other - questions and memories of himself. These conversations, bridging real and virtual spaces, are within video-like digital scenes that recompose themselves based on the nature of the conversation between the two main characters. The subject of the conversation, as determined by the artificial actor, controls the landscape which is seen, so these change as the conversations go along, and other figures appear and disappear. The scenes are also populated by figures - autonomous "software agents" in the form of realtime 3d computer animation - which appear in the projected image-world that fills his vision.

KF head: The desert is enormous.
Projected head: In London people talk wherever they go.
You are imagining things.
Trouble, trouble, trouble.
Why do you say trouble?
Why donít you give me a break?
Itís not a bad idea.
Ideas are going on going on, goiung on going on.
What is your name?
It is something that makes me feel attentive to corpses.
Attentive to corpses? What does that feel like?
What can I tell you?
What about it?
Yes, and he wants the group.
I donít understand whatís going on.
How so?
I am hopeful, because this difficulty is auspicious.
Lucky for you.
It never was tempting to rattle the answer.
Then why did I think so?
What can I tell you?
Tell me about it.
What can I tell you about about?
What does it mean?
That the magpie will commit pivots. I feel ambiguous without knowing why.
What are you thinking about.
Ooooooooo, what do you think, man?
Depends on the weather.
It never is simple to bury the past.
Whatís that?
There are nights when itís faster to pale.
I know what you mean.
That the adult will mount words.
Not works? What can be said?
Can be said? Sure, something like that?
Can be said something like that? Indeed yes.
Precisely, more or less.
I canít be sure.
Here comes somebody else, somebody else.
I am aromatic.
Oh yeah? Tell me about it.
What is there to say?
What is there to say? How should I know?
The I which thinks, or the I which touches?
The able one.
I canít comprehend that at all.
Canít comprehend that at all? Huh Ė you must be complicated, huh?
What did they say?
No idea, why do you ask?
I wonder if anyone else knows.
What is real, right?
Do you think I know the far away?
Do you?
It was inspiring to murder the answer.
The I which covers?
The committed one?
Did you understand me?
You understand me? Never mind.
Comin in, comin in. comin in.
What can I do?
The I which smells or the I which sees?
What part of you is there before you say I thatís not I?
Here comes somebody else, somebody else.
Did you understand me?
Exactly, uh huh.
By the time you hear the sound, the cause of it is already finished.

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