project paper

Cyborg Sculptures

| April 2015

The world's first Cyborg Sculptures, containing the same cybernetic capabilities of their human-cyborg counterparts.

PROJECT BACKGROUND

At the beginning of the 21st Century, digital technology has begun to unlock new types of perception and creation that extend beyond the physical limitations of the human form. Modern manifestations of Cyborgism, or human beings with biological and technological components, has enabled individuals to possess enhanced senses such as the ability to hear color or sense the seismic activity of the Earth. These cybernetic senses respectively belong to Neil Harbisson, the first government recognized Human Cyborg, and Moon Ribas.

Artist Isaac Budmen creates artistic works and products using processes enabled by 21st Century digital capture and fabrication technologies. These unique sculptures represent an artistic collaboration between three 21st Century Citizens who came together to create interactive sculptures that capture, educate and share the enhanced senses of Harbisson and Ribas with the world.

ABOUT THE CYBORG SCULPTURES

The CYBORG SCULPTURE of Neil Harbisson is a life-size bust with integrated cybernetic antenna. The interactive piece allows visitors to actually HEAR color in the way Harbisson has achieved with his own cybernetic components.

The CYBORG SCULPTURE of Moon Ribas is a life-size arm sculpture with integrated cybernetics that allow visitors to feel the vibrating feedback that alerts Ribas of seismic activity occurring at points around the globe.

Cyborg Sculpture of Neil Harbisson
Cyborg Sculpture of Neil Harbisson
Photo: Budmen Industries
Cyborg Sculpture of Moon Ribas
Cyborg Sculpture of Moon Ribas
Photo: Budmen Industries
Cyborg Sculpture of Neil Harbisson
Cyborg Sculpture of Neil Harbisson
Photo: Budmen Industries
Cyborg Sculpture of Moon Ribas
Cyborg Sculpture of Moon Ribas
Photo: Budmen Industries
Image description
Isaac Budmen 3D scans cyborg Neil Harbisson
Photo: Budmen Industries
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Isaac Budmen 3D scans cyborg Moon Ribas
Photo: Budmen Industries
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The segmented sculpture of Neil Harbisson being bonded together
Photo: Budmen Industries
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The first stages of psuedoing underway on the 3D printed sculpture of Moon Ribas' arm.
Photo: Budmen Industries
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Photo: Budmen Industries
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Photo: Budmen Industries

Process:

To create the life-accurate sculptures of Harrisson and Ribas, Budmen captured each subject using 3D scan data. The resulting 3D models were then digitally sculpted to enhance details and contrast to produce

Each piece starts with an infrared 3D scanning process in which the subject sits very still while 3D data points are gathered by a digital sensor. Budmen, who has thousands of hours of scanning experience, worked carefully to capture Neil Harbisson’s full head and shoulders, and then Moon Ribas’ left arm and shoulder. From this 3D capture data, rough 3D models were produced. Each model was then digitally sculpted by hand to emphasize details and insure accurate likeness to the original subject.

Next, hidden cavities are added to each model to house the cybernetic components developed by Harrisson and Ribas. Finally each piece is additively manufactured in PLA plastic through a process commonly known as “3D Printing” and assembled to create the final form. To complete the pieces, Budmen applied a proprietary “psuedoing” process, creating a richly textured, aged bronze finish to give the pieces the illusion of history and materiality.


Image description
Isaac Budmen presents the sculpture of Moon Ribas' arm to her.
Photo: Budmen Industries
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A render of the Neil Harbisson's 3D capture.
Photo: Budmen Industries
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Assembly plan of Moon Ribas' arm sculpture
Photo: Budmen Industries
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Exploring possible cybernetic cavities inside of the Neil Harbisson sculpture for.
Photo: Budmen Industries
RELEVANT RESOURCES
Curious to learn more? Check out these links:
Resource Description
Cyborg Foundation An international organization that aims to help people become cyborgs (extend their senses by applying cybernetics to the organism); defend cyborg rights and promote cyborgism as an art movement.
Cyborg Labs In 2015 the Cyborg Foundation and Younivis started the Cyborg Labs, a cluster of initiatives architecting new senses for the cyborg generation.
Human+ Exhibition at CCCB "Cyborgs, superhumans and clones. What does it mean to be a human today?" the Human+ exhibition at the Centre de Cultura Contemporània de Barcelona brings together a diverse group of creative answers.

COLLABORATORS

Neil Harbisson | Cyborg Artist

Neil Harbisson is a Catalan-raised, British-born contemporary artist, cyborg activist and co-founder of the Cyborg Foundation best known for having an antenna implanted in his skull and for being officially recognized as a cyborg by a government. The antenna allows him to perceive visible and invisible colours such as infrareds and ultraviolets via sound waves.

Moon Ribas | Cyborg Artist

Moon Ribas is a Catalan contemporary choreographer and the co-founder of the Cyborg Foundation. Since 2007 Moon has been experimenting with different cybernetics devices that allow her to perceive movement in a deeper way. Moon's main research consists in developing the seismic sense, perceiving the movement of real-time earthquakes all around the world, small as 1 in Richter scale.

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