The Frenchman Lake


An interactive robotic art installation by
Bill Vorn & LP Demers
Montréal (Québec) Canada
© 1995

Produced with the help of
The Canada Council for the Arts

Sensor device by
Richard Gravel




THE FRENCHMAN LAKE is an invented aquatic ecosystem composed of sensitive and expressive cybernetic organisms. This metaphor feeds on the organic sounds and movements in order to create an hybrid between nature and the artificial.

THE FRENCHMAN LAKE explores the emergence of behaviors from primitive robotic organisms interaction and addresses the level of simulacra to implant artificial life.

The installation comprise of a network-society of sixteen submarine robotic units coexisting in a common basin (or a set of containers) where viewers can circulate freely around. Each organism is composed of a pneumatic actuator, a speaker, a light source, a strobelight and four sensing devices.

The choice of an aquatic environment comes from the quest of recreating unusual habitats for robotics organisms, a space which also acts as a catalyst of new possibilities for sound and light diffusion. This installation is part of our exploratory work on immersive metaphoric environments via the utilization of machines that produce movement, light and sound.

Frenchman Lake is a desert lake in the Yucca Flat (Nevada, USA). This lake is among the first nuclear test sites and, even today, is still radioactive. Under a calm and serene appearance, the valley drizzles with invisible "life"...






• Sonambiente'96 SoundArt'96 Festival
(Berlin, Germany)
From August 9 to September 8, 1996

• ISEA'95 International Symposium on Electronic Arts, 95
(Montréal, Canada)
From September 18 to 23, 1995






High Resolution Pictures

•, 3.4 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1505 x 1169
•, 2.7 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1126 x 1506
•, 3.1 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1140 x 1531
•, 2.5 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1521 x 1181
•, 2.9 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1550 x 1097
•, 3.4 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1750 x 1173
•, 3.9 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1693 x 1177
•, 3.6 MB, TIFF format, 300 dpi, 1573 x 1105

YouTube Video

The Frenchman's Lake


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