The World as an Automated Warehouse is an in situ video installation for the Mine Couriot Museum in Saint-Étienne. It shows the hidden realities of the automation of the world and reveals the deployment of a world inhabited by machines and algorithms : manufactured goods covering immense routes on the infrastructures of global logistics, automated farms, masses of data exchanged between computers…
The World as an Automated Warehouse
This project was thought up specifically for the Coal mine Museum - Puits Couriot in the city of Saint-Étienne : it is deployed in the room of the « hanging men », which keeps the memory of the workers who hung their clothes from the ceiling before the Puits Couriot ceased its activity. As if crushed by this almost spectral presence, three films projected flat on the floor show ghostly industrial spaces. They are in operation, but human beings are absent from them. They are part of an automatic world that extends stealthily into suburban warehouses, where goods, data or animals are transported through the same machines and subjected to the same logic of storage and transformation.
The World as an Automated Warehouse (18 min) shows robots moving items in huge warehouses devoid of any living presence. They move quickly from one shelf to another, foraging like bees in a hive with rectangular cells.
The Burrow (26 min) takes us into an infinite journey through places dedicated to the storage and processing of data circulating on the Internet.
- The Animal Farm (10 min) presents the automation of livestock processing.
At the same time, forms of interaction between living organisms and machines are emerging, that do not follow the paths announced by futurologists. Human characteristics and skills are now extended to robots, endowed with affection for kittens, taking care of the elderly. The videos placed on the benches treat of unexpected encounters.
Cat loves pig (26 min) displays images of cats using robot vacuum cleaners as toys, and other strange conversations between animals and robots in domestic spaces.
Roboseal (16 min) shows elderly people petting interactive otter-fur in nursing homes, robot bears lifting patients in hospitals, cushions hugging Japanese salarymen, and other servants who are supposed to take care of us.
- Nao's Sex Life (10 min), co-directed with Pierre Cassou-Noguès, tells the story of a humanoid robot who, in contact with humans, gradually discovers his inner life and tries to overcome his neuroses by flirting.
The films are composed from online videos selected, reassembled and reassembled to form an archive collection.
Three Plexiglas projections on the floor, three LCD screens
With Pierre Cassou-Noguès
Curator : Philippe Peyre
Pictures : Fl. Kelinefenn / Parc-musée de la mine (Ville de St-Etienne)