!brute_force. September, 2020


Maja Smrekar, art piece.
!brute_force by Maja Smrekar*

What can artificial intelligence learn from dogs?  What if AI was composed through metacommunicative skills of a dog?  What happens in this case with the artificial neural network plasticity?

Since dogs establish such strong emotional intelligence with humans, they may be able to establish some kind of a connection with AI by constructing a symbiotic code that AI would never have composed with a human agent.

!brute_force by Maja Smrekar is an ongoing practice-based artistic research that at its final stage aims to present an interactive installation in which a robotic arm learns from the movements of a dog and transforms the labyrinth where it moves by proposing a game between non-human agents.

During the last decades, our culture has moved quickly to the digital domain and our behavior have been modeled through programs designed through data capture. Such a behavioral computational regime is perceived as a training method to control life, and where staying away from this becomes a privilege. The research dwells on a general premise that AI and technology should emancipate humans since our reality has for a long time been no longer nature.

The artist think that although we need technology, our present cannot be limited only to machines, and for this reason, it is important to include non-human entities when reflecting on our place in the world and how technology will take us to the future.


I. Click Festival 2019, Helsingor, Denmark (19 May 2019).
II. Ars Electronica Festival 2019, Linz, Austria (September 5 to 9, 2019).
III. Kapelica Gallery, Ljubljana, Slovenia (December 2019).
IV. Click Festival 2020, Helsingor, Denmark (May 2020).
PREMIERE: Ars Electronica Festival 2020, Linz, Austria (September 2020).


Maja Smrekar‘s (SI)  work has been established in the international art and science milieu. Grounded in sculpture and contemporary arts, her practice has allowed her to lead strong collaborations in developing cross-conceptual productions that include installations, performances, site-specific art, drawings, videos, sound, workshops, lectures, talks, and texts. She has been an artistic associate of various production platforms, such as Kapelica Gallery / Kersnikova Institute (SI), The Culture Yard (DK), Aksioma Institute (SI), Quo Artis Foundation (ES), etc. Among other awards Smrekar received the Golden Nica Award in the Hybrid Art category of the Prix Ars Electronica in 2017 and Preseren Foundation Award, the highest national award for artistic achievements in Slovenia in 2018. Smrekar’s work has been exhibited at numerous venues worldwide, among them at art spaces (Kapelica Gallery, SI; Art Laboratory Berlin, DE), festivals (Ars Electronica, AT; Click festival, DK; Transmediale, DE; Rencontres Bandits-Mages, FR), and museums (ZKM Karlsruhe, DE; Het Neuwe Institut, NL; Latvian National Arts Museum, LV; Museum of Contemporary Art Metelkova, SI).

More info: https://www.majasmrekar.org/



Created by Maja Smrekar (SI)
Produced by Quo Artis Foundation (ES)
Co-produced by Kapelica Gallery / Kersnikova Institute (SI) and The Culture Yard / CLICK Festival (DK)
Partner Ars Electronica (AT)

This project is part of the ‘European ARTificial Intelligence Lab’ initiative and is supported by the Creative Europe Programme of the European Union, Ministry of Culture of the Republic of Slovenia, Municipality of Ljubljana – Department for Culture, Danish Art Council.

AI team: Alen Balja, Miran Lončarič, Naveen Agula in collaboration with Primoz Ravbar (UCSB, USA)

*Photo by Borut Peterlin. Collaborators: Polona Bonač (animal wrangler) with dog Baxus; University of Ljubljana / Faculty of Mechanical Engineering / Laboratory for Machining.