Things That Go Bump: Tate Britain’s After Dark

Go on a Robot Assisted Tour Around Tate Britain After Closing Time

Members of the public can now remotely control a robot, where no man has remotely controlled a robot before! By logging on to afterdark.tate.org.uk, we can guide one of four robots, equipped with lights, a camera, sensors and motors, allowing them to sneak through the galleries in the dark.

An onboard computer streams their vision through the Internet in real-time and responds to commands. The project continues until August 17, and was created by the design studio, The Workers (Tommaso Lanza, Ross Cairns and David Di Duca). They were inspired to re-create the experience of being alone in the gallery after dark. ‘[It] combines behind-the-scenes intrigue with a sense of exploration.’ The Workers have said. ‘It will give people all over the world a unique experience of 500 years of British art.’

The Robots have been created in collaboration with RAL Space (who work alongside the UK Space Agency – UKSA), a world-leading centre for the research and development of space exploration technologies.

Colonel Chris Hadfield, former commander of the International Space Station, who performed a rendition of David Bowie’s Space Oddity while aboard the station, has been the first person to navigate the robots, doing this from his home in Toronto.

After Dark was chosen by a panel of industry experts from a shortlist of four proposals. The winner was given a prize of £10,000 and a £60,000 development budget to realise a project that will connect audiences with the Tate collection. This project has definitely done that!

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