Monday June 4th 2018

Workshop: Tickle Salon

An AI bodily experience in the making

This event is part of the Dutch Technology Week 2018. During this workshop, artist duo Driessens and Verstappen will talk about their “Tickle Salon” robot, being developed for the Robot Love Eindhoven 2018 exhibition. This workshop is in collaboration with Baltan Laboratories, through the Sentient Machines: artist-in-residence programme. Participation is free of charge after registration.

Tickle Salon

During a typical massage session, fatigue in the movement and motivation arises after a period of time. Variation, attention and unpredictability are important aspects for a pleasant sensation of caressing. This was the main reason for developing Tickle Salon: a robot that is capable of caressing with tireless attention. The hanging robot from Tickle Salon scans the skin surface with a ‘feeler’. Through artificial intelligence, the robot gradually forms an increasingly detailed representation of the shape of the body. During a stroking session, the robot adjusts its movements accordingly: the touches become increasingly subtle and smoother. For Robot Love, the artists investigate whether it is possible to make the robot aware of the effects of its movements, in order to offer an even finer experience. The feedback of physically measurable changes in the human body (with an EEG) would allow the robot to adjust its behavior, becoming more personal and therefore no longer generic.


Driessens & Verstappen

The artist duo Erwin Driessens (1963 Wessem) and Maria Verstappen (1964 Someren) have been working together since 1990. After their studies at the Academy of Fine Arts in Maastricht and the Rijksakademie in Amsterdam, they developed a multifaceted oeuvre of objects, machines and software. Their research focuses on the possibilities that physical, chemical and computer algorithms can offer for the development of image-generating processes. Driessens & Verstappen participated in exhibitions in, among others, the Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Museum Boijmans van Beuningen Rotterdam, Centraal Museum Utrecht, LABoral Gijón, IVAM Institute Valencia, Kröller-Müller Museum Otterlo, New Pinakothek Munich, Eyebeam New York, DEAF Rotterdam. The duo gave presentations at conferences such as Siggraph Los Angeles, Sonic Acts Amsterdam, Second Iteration Melbourne. In 1999 and 2001 they received the first prize for their strobe robot projects from VIDA, an international competition for Art & Artificial Life. In 2013, the duo received the Witteveen + Bos Prize for Art + Technology for their entire oeuvre. The artists are represented by DAM gallery in Berlin.

Find out more about their work at:

Register at:


Fontys Robolab – Campus Rachelsmolen
Rachelsmolen 1
5612 MA Eindhoven



Monday June 4th 2018

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