VISITING the exhibition Artists and Robots at the Grand Palais in Paris, I happened on the artist ORLAN, best known for her work involving body modification. She was standing close to her 2017 work ORLAN and the ORLANOID, in which her video presence interrogates a lookalike robot on matters of life and death. Having borrowed the robot’s lensless glasses for a photo shoot, she needed her own back. I was struck by the robot’s lack of reaction as she made the swap. It underscored my answer to the question posed by this exhibition: can a robot create a work of visual art?
This article first appeared online in Nature on 27 April 2018. To continue reading, click here.