ITP Winter Show 2017

video coming soon

Transmotion is an attempt to capture the emotion and beauty of poetry and transform it, by means of mechanical interpretation and conversion, into machine performance. The apparatus is seeded with human input, beautiful pieces of poetry, and I want to know whether it is capable of evoking the same sense of expression and emotion.

The selected poems are processed through sentiment analysis to extract the affective score of parts of the text. It is then read by a mechanical text-to-speech synthesizer and sent, word-by-word, to the robotic performer. The performer receives each word in time and interprets it into 3-axial movement.

Is there a connection between the text and the motion, between the poet's intention and the machine interpretation, and are performative automata capable of capturing and conveying human emotion?

Bill of Materials

  • 3d-printed PLA
  • Laser-cut acrylic sheet
  • micro-servo motors
  • Stepper motor
  • Arduino nano
  • Bamboo box
  • Amazon AWS Polly
  • Google Cloud Natural Language API
  • Processing 3

Shown at


The poem performed is "All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace" by Richard Brautigan.