Robot woodpeckers are coming to take over St Petersburg

Robot woodpeckers are coming to take over St Petersburg

1 August 2019

Berlin-based artist Marco Barotti is unleashing a wave of robotic animals across St Petersburg’s New Holland island as part of a month-long art installation.

The project will include a small army of mechanical woodpeckers, powered by the pulse of local mobile phone signals. Nearby radio waves will prompt the birds to tap on the trees around them, transforming the unseen digital world around us into a real-life cacophony.

A second work, Swans, will see a floating flock of birds created from speakers and satellite dishes. A mix of deep bass and brass instruments will bring the swans’ voices to life, blending the natural and man-made in a way that’s designed to spark both revulsion, and an intimate feeling of familiarity.

“The primary focus of my work involves creating a ‘tech ecosystem’ that plays with a resemblance to animals that have a strong identity in our cultures,” says Barotti. “These artworks serve as a metaphor for the anthropogenic impact on the planet and aim to make people aware of environmental issues.”

arotti’s woodpeckers will come to life in different parts of the park between 1-4 August from 17:00 to 21:00. Swans will remain on the island until the end of the month.

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