The Astana Paintings
June – September 2017
“Artists & Robots”, Astana Contemporary Art Center (ACAC), Kazakhstan

Leonel Moura’s Artsbot can be considered within a lineage of drawing machines that includes Jean Tinguely’s mechanical Metamatics from the 1950s, Harold Cohen’s Aaron computer program, initiated in 1973, and Roman Verostko’s Derivation of the Laws, 1990.

What distinguishes Artsbot from these works is that it consists of simple autonomous robots that collectively respond to each other and their environment to generate emergent complexity, a fundamental principle of scientific research in artificial life and synthetic biology.

Edward A. Shanken in Flash Art, 316, September / October 2017

The Astana Paintings were done by a swarm of 4 to 9 autonomous robots evolving in a large arena. Each robot had one dry safe permanent ink pen with the colour red, green or blue.

Each painting is 280 x 470 cm and took 3 to 5 days to be completed.

The Astana Painting demonstrates complexity at work. From a random start, when the canvas is white, soon lines and shapes emerge creating an abstract but elaborate composition.

The Astana Paintings demonstrates that creativity, a mechanism similar to intelligence, can be introduced in machines.

Creativity is a natural phenomenon based on simple rules and interactions that can be converted in machine language and behaviour.

Its application in art represents the emergence of a New Kind of Art.

Art created by machines are not a threat to human creativity but rather a challenge and a stimulus for human artists to evolve.

Artificial Creativity is the inevitable future of Art but also of Artificial Intelligence evolution.

“Artists & Robots” Curator: Jérôme Neutres, Director of Strategy and Development
at the Réunion des Musées Nationaux – Grand Palais

BeBot swarm of robots was made in cooperation with Behind Solutions.










Paintings made at the Web Summit 2017

WS1, 2017, ink on canvas, 180 x 270 cm

WS2, 2017, ink on canvas, 180 x 270 cm