David Durlach's Artist Statement

One of my core goals is to create life-like kinetic sculptures and landscapes that are controllable and sufficiently flexible that one can "compose" for them as one composes music for an instrument, or choreograph them as one would a dance troupe.

I am committed to integrating the emotional, the personal, the intimate, and the sensual, with technical competence and creativity. In this vein, I find myself experiencing engineering opportunities as might a composer or choreographer.

I initially entered the area of high-tech art for several reasons. First, in the 1980s when I began, most of the high-tech art I had seen tended to be either technically sophisticated but artistically naive, or artistically sophisticated but technically naive. Since it seemed obvious to me that a better balance between these two extremes would naturally lead to wonderful "living sculptures", I was excited by the opportunities I saw in this area. Second, I was quite unhappy at always having to choose between entering environments which were technically sophisticated, innovative and alive, but artistically, emotionally and relationally naive, or entering environments which were artistically, emotionally and relationally sophisticated, innovative and alive, but technically naive. It seemed impossible (at that time - almost three decades ago now) to find work which was deeply rewarding in both these areas simultaneously, and I felt that creating high-tech art would provide a wonderful intermingling of these sought-after elements.

It is my continuing mission to combine the vast technological capabilities of serious engineering with the emotional and aesthetic richness of the best and most satisfying works of visual and performance art. To make headway in this area, I find it crucial to balance my technical understanding of the physical world with my emotional understanding of myself and others.

For more information, I encourage you to read my (now dated, but nevertheless still relevant) published paper titled Affectionate Technology.