The Swiss-born designer Jürg programs, builds various machines, performs researches and presents his work in various galleries and institutions.
His devices are given names, they’re given an identity; he never calls them robots. It makes sense: technology is used in a very transparent way, they do what people can do by hand. Jürg’s “family” includes Hector, a portable spray paintoutput device for computers, Victor, a robotic chalk-drawing machine, Rita, a recording and playback device for drawings, and more. Each of his project deals with the task on hand with a witty, crafty, even somewhat malicious, yet joyful twist: It’s great to see a robot struggling with a piece of chalk. Jürg admits that he often doesn’t know whether his idea will work or will perhaps works differently than he expected – he calls these situations a “Frankenstein moment”.
Designer, Artist, Programmer (Switzerland)
Someone might object that Jürg’s talk was merely a retrospective presentation of his work. But his physical presence in the room conveyed his enthusiasm. Giggling at his own jokes throughout the show, Jürg has confirmed that he not only has fun with his work but also with presenting it.
Someone would perhaps ask what Jürg’s things are good for. His projects won’t save the planet’s population from starving, or calm down the political situation in Eastern Europe. But you could say that about any art. His works is fun: for the audience, for himself. And he has proven that on stage at TYPO Berlin.