Uncanny Valley

Stefan Kaegi

The solely performer in this work is a humanoid robot, a copy of a real person, the writer Thomas Melle. It performs a lecture on instability, written and narrated by Melle, who is not actually present.



Identification with non-human

The subject of Kaegi's animatronic-robot performancen 'Uncanny Valley', Thomas Melle, is himself a writer and was invited to write much of the text. The writing has an urgency and honesty that allowed me, as a viewer, to emotionally 'buy into' the robot in the same way I would if Melle were performing himself. The subject of the Christian holy theme park 'Tierra Santa', in Argentina, is of course God. God apparently created everything (not just this theme park). His and Jesus's voice is heard at various points in many of the animatronic shows that are staged there. For most visitors, suspension of disbelief is a given: it comes suspended. And for them too, the writing has an urgency that allows them, as viewers, to emotionally 'buy into' the robots in the same way they would if God were speaking Himself. 

Stefan Kaegi
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