I am a visual artist who has been developing socially engaged art projects that directly connect people to hidden aspects of life using sensors and robotics since the early 1980s. Working with interactive sculptures and live performances, my projects rely on viewers to take an active role to complete each work. Projects primarily involve hand-built robots, digital technology, sound, video, movement, and human physiology. They raise open ended questions about the dominant economic producers of technology, the interplay of technology and spirituality, the role of the collective in capitalism, and economic and educational privilege.
For 29 years I have been an artist and educator based in San Francisco. I have completed large scale, collaborative, local and international projects that question the values, roles, and norms inherent in how our culture develops, distributes, and uses technology. Given its overarching impact on culture, technology is the most important medium to be working in at this point in history. It is steering the planet and will either save us or destroy us. My work is generated from the belief that humanity prevails over technology.
My interactive sculptures are built from the same elements of technology, hardware and software, used in everyday consumer, industrial, and military devices. Viewed from our contemporary mainstream vantage point, one immersed in applied, functional technologies, my sculptures seem nonsensical. While using some of the same elements, they are not produced for commercial use or to monetize solutions to practical problems of day to day life. They are optimistic alternatives that subvert technology’s intended functional use and break the barrier of exclusive access that promotes passive consumption.
Residency: February 2019 - May 2019
Art Exhibition: Friday, May 17 & Saturday, May 18 & Tuesday, May 21
Kal Spelletich's website