Co-creating tomorrow: the human-robot alliance

As part of the Pilar ASAP Festival – The Posthuman Edition, we are pleased to present a conversation exploring, from the point of view of artists and scientists, what might be the future of collaboration between humans and robots.

This talk is presented in the framework of the Sustainable Robotics artists residency, organised by Ohme in collaboration with BrIAS – Brussels Institute for Advanced Studies, and FARI Institute for AI for the common good.

Artists Dewi Brunet and Kris Verdonck, both selected for the residency, will present their projects and their practices at the border between art and robotics, in conversation with Franziska Kirstein and Professor Barry Lennox, international robotics experts from the BrIAS 2024 programme.

Dewi Brunet is a folding artist interested in the sensitive relationship between the living world and robots. This practice is part of the field of Oribotics, a fusion of nature, origami and robotics.

Kris Verdonck explores the societal and ecological impacts of technological advances with a multidisciplinary approach that blends theatrical and visual elements to create unique artistic expressions.

Franziska Kirstein has worked in interdisciplinary teams in the field of Human-Robot Interaction since 2012. Her work combines the robotics industry with academic research in international collaborations, focusing on sustainability in robotics.

Barry Lennox is a Fellow of the Royal Academy of Engineering and Professor of Applied Control and Decommissioning in Nuclear Engineering at the University of Manchester (UK). He chairs the UK Robotics and Autonomous Systems Network.

The conversation will take place in English.


Tuesday 5 March

Doors: 18:30

Free entrance

Pilar, House for Art & Science – Bd de la Plaine 2, 1050 Bruxelles



Unframed is a multiformat concept unfolding over a series of panel talks, informal conversations and performances around ArtScience. Originally commissioned by Les Garages Numériques Festival in Brussels, Unframed is modular and adaptable to different contexts.

2020 - unframed x pilar - the fluidity edition

What is fluidity? If we look at how it is defined by dictionaries, we find it’s the quality of being smooth and beautiful, or likely to change (Oxford Dictionary); it is the physical property of a substance that enables it to flow (Merriam Webster); the quality of being likely to change repeatedly and unexpectedly, or of being continuous (Cambridge Dictionary).

All these definitions are similar, reminiscent of a state of being that is momentary, characterized by movement and impermanence. Can the so-called hard sciences and the humanities come together around a single word, and investigate its multifaceted meaning? To what extent can fluidity as understood by a biologist be compared with that understood by a political scientist or an artist? Can this exchange enrich the interpretation that we all have of what’s fluidity and how we understand it in the society we inhabit?

Ohme brings together scientists, researchers, and artists to explore one single word and unfold the multiple meanings and repercussions it has on our knowledge and perceptions.


Prof. Dr. Karen Celis, research professor at the Department of Political Science and co-director Research of RHEA, Research Centre on gender, diversity and intersectionality (VUB);

Prof. Dr. Karine Van Doninck, Full Professor at the Department of Biology, Faculty of Sciences at ULB and UNamur. Principal Investigator of the ERC Consolidator Grant RHEA.

Moderated by Camilla Colombo, curator (Ohme)

2019 - unframed x les garages numerique

Unframed Panel Talk on ArtScience

The panel brought in different points of view on the topic of art and science collaborations, to tackle questions such as what does it mean to build bridges between artistic and scientific disciplines, especially in this society of hyper-specialization and fragmentation? How to present the outcomes of these collaborations to our audiences, playing the key role of mediators in sensible and meaningful ways? The panel aimed at offering a moment of reflection about a topic that is living a particularly “hype” moment, but it is often misinterpreted and misunderstood, and to shed a light on the how and why these collaborations, partnership and encounters are beneficial for all parties involved as well as for society at large.

With: AnneMarie Maes, artist | Eric Kluitenberg, theorist, writer, curator, and educator | Lorenzo Gerbi, designer, studio & education manager, Baltan Laboratories | Jennifer Wong, head of programming, London Science Gallery
Moderated by Camilla Colombo, artistic director, Ohme

Unframed Conversations

A selection of artists and scientists presented their work as artists and their scientific research, discussed artistic interpretation and applications, and scientific practice around common topics, giving a glimpse on the nature of the world we live in, as it is perceived and analysed through their different approaches.

With: Mathieu Zurstrassen, artist & Romain Maggiolo, researcher at BIRA – Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy | Felix Luque, artist | Evelina Domnitch & Dmitry Gelfand, artists

Unframed Close Up

A group of scientists unveiled the sciences behind a selection of artworks selected from Les Garages Numériques Festival exhibition.
Starting from the artists’ works, scientists talked about neurosciences, quantum physics, holograms, generative coding and northern lights in an informal setting, for small groups of people, in the exhibition space, using artworks as starting points for accessible 15 minutes science talks.

With: Jean-Marc Sparenberg, Nuclear Physics and Quantum Physics Research Unit, ULB – talking about light waves, photons and atoms on frequencies (light quanta) by Nicolas Bernier | Athanasia Symeonidou, Electronics and Informatics Department (ETRO), VUB – talking about holography on Holograms by Louise Bourgeois |Anna Peiffer, Center for Research in Cognition & Neurosciences, ULB – talking about brainwaves on abscisse by Bots Conspiracy | Frederik Vanhoutte, Creative Coder, Physics PhD – talking about creative and generative coding on Bosphorus by Refik Anadol | Romain Maggiolo, researcher at BIRA – Belgian Institute for Space Aeronomy talking about northern lights on EOEEIT by Mathieu Zurstrassen.

Unframed Live

Evelina Domnitch & Dmitry Gelfand – FORCE FIELD 
Charles de Ville & Francois Gaspard – QUADRAPHONIC ABSTRACT

Music & Technology

Music & Technology Corner

Music & Technology Corner a multiformat concept unfolding over a series of talks, lectures, workshops and live concerts about technologies and music.
The MTC brings together performers, practitioners and academics for an all-day gathering that transcends the borders between creative practice, scientific understanding and technical expertise.

Edition 2018

BEM Brussels Electronic Marathon – MiM Musical Instruments Museum, Brussels

With: NSDOS | Valery Vermeulen | Paola De Narvaez | Nicolas D’Alessandro – Hovertone | Sine (Boris Wilmot & François Gaspard) | Holonic Systems (Ove Holmqvist & Mark Hakonen-Meddings) | Wired Electronics | NSDOS | Damien Petitot – Signal_Video | Valery Vermeulen – Mikromedas | Xavier Gazon | Exo¬terrism 顯宗法

Edition 2017

BEM Brussels Electronic Marathon – RecyK, Brussels

With: Axoloti | Klavis | Joranalogue Audio Design | Polaxis | Shakmat Modular | Livestock Electronics | Dissonance Software | Holon | Music City Brussels | Action et Recherche Culturelles | Xavier Gazon | Wired Electronics | Seismic Industries | Bots Conspiracy | Jean Hurter | Prof. Jean-Louis Migeot | Prof. Frédéric Robert | Raoul Sommeillier | Maxime Denuc | Dr. Pascal Francq | Dj Ucture | ALEA(s) | Cornill x Eliardo | OTON


Machine dans ma tête: les liens étroits entre sciences et musique // Focus Le Vif – Elisabeth Debourse // 22.11.2018

La musique ramène sa science // Le Soir – Didier Zacharie // 09.10.2018

Argumenter en démocratie

Rhetoric in democracy

Rhetoric as a citizenship exercise

Presented at the Brass’Art Digitaal Café in Molenbeek, this educational and artistic performance highlights a scientific discipline that is too rarely presented as such: rhetoric and the science of language.

Participants get to know each other by learning storytelling techniques through the sharing of anecdotes. They then practice the greatest challenge of rhetoric: paradoxical praise. It is about making beautiful and desirable what is generally considered ugly and shameful. By practicing this exercise, they develop a technical perspective on how the media make and break reputations, with a look of attention on the Molenbeek district and its media representation.

The objective of this workshop is to refine our democratic skills by providing everyone with a toolbox for public speaking but also to develop a more critical view of major social issues. The challenges of the workshop also allow participants to gain confidence in expressing their points of view.

The performance is the product of an experimental artistic-scientific residency between the GRAL (Research Group in Rhetoric and Linguistic Argumentation of the ULB) and David Scarpuzza, actor and director from Brussels.

– Conception and realisation: Group GRAL ULB & David Scarpuzza
– Direction & acting: David Scarpuzza
– Scientific Direction: Group GRAL ULB

Printemps des Science at Brass’Art Digitaal Café  21-25 March 2018

STEAM Conferences

Smells Like STEAM Spirit is a cycle of lectures and panel talks presenting a selection exciting projects at the nexus of arts, science, technology and industry.

STEAM is for Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts & Mathematics.

Internationally renowned lecturers and organisations introduced the audience to a myriad of art & engineering projects. From bio-adaptive architecture to gesture control in video gaming, from multisensory experiences to joint arts-science research studies. The cycle includes four conferences around various topics.



Designing sounds to enhance tasting experiences
with Felipe Reinoso Carvalho

Biomimicry in architecture

Biomimicry as a driving force for aesthetics, innovation and sustainable architecture
with Steven Ware (Art&Build)

Selected arts&science projects

International and collaborative art & science projects by Ars Electronica, BOZAR and Gluon
with Paul Dujardin, Veronika Liebl, Christophe De Jaeger & Michel Tombroff

How depthsensing impacts our world

The present and future of depthsensing in gaming and arts
with Ward van der Tempel & Christopher Littlefair (Sony Depthsensing Solutions)

Smells Like STEAM Spirit has been commissioned by the Alumni Association of the École polytechnique de Bruxelles and took place between March and May 2018.



Music: perceptions & productions

Act 1: Music, Processing and Perception

– “Physical description of musical sound” by Jean-Louis Migeot, professor at the Ecole polytechnique de Bruxelles (ULB) and the Conservatoire de Liège

– “Two tools for processing sound waves: the Ear and the Machine” by Antoine Nonclerq, lecturer at the Ecole polytechnique and Federico Lucchetti, doctoral student at the Université Libre de Bruxelles.

– Musical interlude (LIVE)

– “From perception to thrills: how do we process music?” by Régine Kolinsky, Director of Research at the FRS-FNRS and Director of the Cognitive Neuroscience Research Unit (UNESCOG) at the ULB, and Manon Couvignou, holder of a Master’s degree in Cognitive Sciences from the École Normale Supérieure de Paris.

Act 2 : The Physics of Acoustic Music

– “Notions d’acoustique instrumentale: les instruments à vents” by Jean-Louis Migeot (presented above).

– “Musical interlude (LIVE)

Act 3: Introduction to Modular Analog Synthesis
François Gaspard, an engineer by training, is also a multi-instrumentalist musician, electronic music producer and sound engineer. After having collaborated on numerous musical projects for nearly two decades, he has now launched the creation and marketing of synthesis modules under the name Shakmat Modular. François will present the principles of analogue synthesis, explain how his modules work and do a 50 min set.