SCI-Arc to Host Two Robotics Workshops in Bogotá

As part of its international initiative, SCI-Arc Bogotá, SCI-Arc will host robotics workshops at two local universities this month. One workshop will be held at the Universidad de los Andes on February 14–16, and the second will be held at the nearby Pontificia Universidad Javeriana on February 19–21. The workshops will be led by SCI-Arc faculty member Curime Batliner.

Within its on-campus Robot House, SCI-Arc offers five robots for student use. A sixth robot was shipped to Bogotá to be part of an installation at Voltaje, an art fair that was held in October. The installation—which was conceived by Juan Ricardo Rincón Gaviria, the local coordinator for the SCI-Arc Bogotá program, along with Batliner and Jake Newsum, SCI-Arc Robotics Lab Coordinator—examined the relationship between nature and technology in a provocative way.

The robot has since remained in Bogotá and will facilitate these two three-day workshops, which “will introduce groups of students to robotics as part of the toolset to think about architecture,” according to Batliner. In order to save time that could be consumed by tuning and calibration and provide a more valuable first experience with robotics for students, materiality will be removed from the process. Instead, students will use lighting and properties of long exposure photography to produce ephemeral renderings of objects using the robot.

“By changing the medium to something ephemeral, we are not subject to gravity in the same way,” Batliner says. “But we should still be able to produce very beautiful images and assemblies.