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At THE ARTS+, the arstist group robotlab will present its project “manifest”

Frankfurt, 8 September 2017 – Digitalisation influences every aspect of our daily lives and thinking. We are all a part of it, and we are all experiencing the emergence of new technologies first hand. THE ARTS+, the business festival for the culture and creative industries, which will take place for the second time this year during the Frankfurter Buchmesse (11-15 October 2017), links creativity and digital concepts. Here, among other things, visitors will be able to witness the project “manifest”, in which a robot, with the help of algorithms, generates innovative theses on robot art and robot ethics, philosophy and human-machine society and (hand)writes them down in three different languages. It then cuts off the paper it has written on and hands it to the audience. In this way, up to 80 different texts are produced per day, which visitors to THE ARTS+ can take home with them.

The independent artist group robotlab (, founded in 2000 by Matthias Gommel, Martina Haitz and Jan Zappe, is the team behind “manifest”. The Impulse for the project "manifest" came from Professor Peter Weibel, Director of the Centre for Art and Media (ZKM, Zentrum für Kunst und Medien) in Karlsruhe.

“The machine is abandoning its role as service provider and, as an independent technical individual, is taking up the role of author, politician and artist”, explain the artists of robotlab; this is the underlying idea of the project. Their machine is based on a text generator that, with the help of algorithms, draws on a pool of terms from the subject areas of art, philosophy and technology and randomly combines them within sentence structures.

“Algorithms make each manifesto unique – and thus actually a self-contradiction. Yet does that make the machine a driving force of human culture? And does the machine itself become creative as a result? Projects like these, where culture and technology collide, are sure to lead to surprising discussions with our visitors”, says Holger Volland, Co-Founder of THE ARTS+.

Professor Peter Weibel, Chairman and CEO of ZKM, adds: “In the 21st century, we are moving from the Gutenberg Galaxy to the Turing Galaxy, from alphabet culture to data culture. This disruptive digital revolution is producing not only an Industry 4.0, but also a Culture 4.0. It is fundamentally changing economics, politics and art. That’s why I think it’s very fitting that a gateway to the Turing Galaxy is being opened at the heart of the Gutenberg Galaxy – namely, at a book fair.”

On Friday, 13 October, from 2:00 to 2:30 p.m. at THE ARTS+ Runway, Matthias Gommel and Jan Zappe will present their project under the title: “Beyond human creativity: May we introduce you to an artistic robot?” Admission is free for book fair visitors.

More information:

THE ARTS+ is a fair, business festival and international meeting place for the culture and creative industries, launched in October 2016 during the Frankfurter Buchmesse. The goal of the new format is to exploit the potential of digitalisation for creative content and to develop new business areas. International artists, opinion leaders and experts as well as an impressive range of exhibitors present innovative approaches from the fields of publishing, museums, architecture and design, brands and agencies.

About the Frankfurter Buchmesse
The Frankfurter Buchmesse is the international publishing industry’s biggest trade fair – with over 7,150 exhibitors from more than 100 countries, around 278,000 visitors, over 4,000 events and approximately 10,000 accredited journalists and bloggers - in attendance. It also gathers key players from other media, including the film and games industries. Since 1976, the Frankfurter Buchmesse has featured an annual Guest of Honour country, which showcases its book market, literature and culture to attendees in a variety of ways. The Frankfurter Buchmesse organises the participation of German publishers at around 20 international book fairs and hosts trade events throughout the year in major international markets. With its Business Club, the Frankfurter Buchmesse offers essential services and an ideal setting for the activities of publishers, entrepreneurs, pioneers, experts and visionaries. The Frankfurter Buchmesse is a subsidiary of the German Publishers & Booksellers Association.

Contact for the media:
Press & Corporate Communications Frankfurter Buchmesse
Katja Böhne, Vice President Marketing & Communications, tel.: +49 (0) 69 2102-138,
Jördis Hille, PR Manager, tel.: +49 (0) 69 2102-271,
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