Plate Recorder | 2017

In collaboration with Roy Maayan
> Latvia International Ceramics Biennale, 2018 | Rothko Center, Daugavpils
> Jerusalem Design Week 2018 | Hansen House, Jerusalem
> Cluj Ceramics Biennale, 2017 | Muzeul de Arta Cluj-Napoca

‘Plate Recorder’ is a digital-era homage to analog, translating sound into matter. Sounds were collected, tagged, and categorised, along with the stories underlying them. A custom-built machine etched the sound waves off fresh overglaze covering ready-made ceramic plates, creating ‘ceramic plate records’. In contrast to industrial vinyl records, the recording process is not optimizing audio quality and precision. This process of translation is quite opaque as lines may overlap, the liquid overglaze flows, and environmental noise is welcomed. While recording each sound one can change its sensitivity and pace via dials and buttons, adding a subjective viewpoint to the visual interpretation.

Plate Recorder has recently been exhibited at the Jerusalem Design Week (Hansen House, Jerusalem, June 2018) and at Cluj Ceramics Biennale (Muzeul de Arta Cluj-Napoca, Cluj, October 2017). Live Plate Recording performances were at the center of the opening events of both exhibitions.

Wrote about Plate Recorder:


Transformations: Co-show with Shlomi Shaban + 'Not A Typewriter'

@ Fresh Paint 9 | Tel Aviv, 2017

Transformations was commission by Fresh Paint 9 and Volvo Time
Photos by Revital Topiol


Vessel Streaming | Solo Exhibition | Zero1 Festival | 2018

@ La Rochelle, France, March-April 2018 | Curator: Diego Jarak

The physical ocean, as well as the digital sea of information, are still unconquered frontiers. Throughout history, untouched territories ignited the imagination of humans, as they tried to tame the forces of nature and discover what is beyond grasp. The heritage of the old-days explorers is nowadays directed towards the vast digital frontlines. The exhibition, spanning along two historical locations at La Rochelle, suggests different reflections on the human endeavour to explore and control.
Complementary aspects of human control are at the heart of two installations; Control via physicality vs. power by history writing, that is, by the process of selecting and archiving data. These two echoes compose a chronicle of the attempt to control but at the same time of human fragility.

A location-based installation at Tour de la Chaîne features hundreds of drinking glasses, collected by La Rochelle’s residents, containing sea water. The glasses are positioned upside-down with their top edges on the surface, locking the water between each glass and the structure below. A concealed mechanism, made of multiple moving magnets, forms waves within the glasses. These waves and currents manifest an ephemeral representation of true data of vessel’s motion at sea. Geo-location information, collected from online sources, logs the positions of sea vessels that had passed through La Rochelle at least once during the months prior to the exhibition. This information is mapped onto the cluster of glasses.

Simultaneously, at Centre Intermondes, machine-made paintings were created based on the same information, accumulating into a digital-analog visual archive. Each painting depicts a composition of vessels’ routs along specific areas of the map, selected by the artist. In contrast to the fluid geographical representation at Tour de la Chaîne, this is a process of collection and preservation of data and history.

Vessel Streaming took place as part of ZERO1 Numeric art and Culture Festival 2018, La Rochelle, France.

Vessel Streaming is dedicated to Prof. Richard Feynman, who is an inspiration for this work and for life in general.

“When I was a junior or senior I used to eat at a certain restaurant in Boston. I went there by myself, often on successive evenings. People got to know me, and I had the same waitress all the time. I noticed that they were always in a hurry, rushing around, so one day, just for fun, I left my tip, which was usually ten cents (normal for those days), in two nickels, under two glasses: I filled each glass to the very top, dropped a nickel in, and with a card over it, turned it over so it was upside down on the table. Then I slipped out the card (no water leaks out because no air can come in ­­ the rim is too close to the table for that). I put the tip under two glasses because I knew they were always in a hurry. If the tip was a dime in one glass, the waitress, in her haste to get the table ready for the next customer, would pick up the glass, the water would spill out, and that would be the end of it. But after she does that with the first glass, what the hell is she going to do with the second one? She can't just have the nerve to lift it up now!”
- "Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!" by Richard P. Feynman


THIS IS NOT A TYPEWRITER | Solo Exhibition | 2016

@ Kanya Project | PLUG-N-PLAY & EIGEN + ART LAB, Berlin

The technical term ‘Not a typewriter’ is an error code used by early days Unix operating systems to indicate an invalid input\output. Unlike the algorithm, a human observer is likely to seek patterns and meanings within an invalid input, a representation or a visual code. On the other hand, when being overflowed by massive amounts of data, how many of these inputs pass one’s attention filter, to begin with?

At the center of the exhibition stands a large painting machine, titled ‘Not a Typewriter’, drawing continuous calligraphic visual codes from digital texts. Mechanical calligraphic brushstrokes draw the textual information, creating two-dimensional geometric encryptions. The texts are mapped into visuals using mapping and coding systems created by Segal. The character sequences are first represented by numerical values (ASCII). These numbers are then mapped to coordinates according to predefined sets of rules and fed as inputs to the machine affecting its motions. The resulting encoded images are unreadable to the human viewer but contain all the textual information summed onto permanent ink-on-paper drawings that are then hanged for display.

A second machine, ‘Typewriter 2.0’, shows temporary glimpses of texts that appear and disappear in front of the observers’ eyes. The machine prints the texts using a material that reacts to UV exposure by temporarily changing its color. This machine-invoked change is ephemeral and the texts fade in seconds, allowing new texts to appear. While this machine shows the text in a readable format, one must have the patience to observe it along time in order to actually read and absorb it.

The inputs to the machines are computer-generated texts. Fake articles are created automatically via an iterative process of combinations, mutations, and manipulations of multiple online sources. These textual ‘ready-mades’ are stitched together contextually into semi-coherent articles and fed into the machines. The texts are sometimes strange and even alienating. The machines, which are the opposite of ready-made, add mechanical noise and irregularities to the resulting images. In these nonverbal glitches, the human observer may find communication and patterns too.

“This Is Not a Typewriter” was created during Axel Springer PLUG-N-PLAY artist in residence program, in collaboration with EIGEN + ART LAB Berlin, Fall 2016.


Wrote about the exhibition:



Stone Machine | 2016

@ Art Space Tel Aviv

The Sisyphean Stone Machine repeatedly separates a pile of pebbles by their colors, from the darkest to the lightest. The machine makes a persistent effort to control and structure the un-structured. This effort may be considered pointless as it goes against the forces of nature. Despite the enduring attempt, as time goes by the stones diffuse and the order is broken.

The machine mechanically controls the movement of individual stone, separating them from the large and heavy pile, moving them along conveyors and through a sensor that detects their colors. This process is not trivial due to the variation in the stones’ sizes and shapes.

As in a biological homeostasis processes in living forms, aiming to direct chemical reactions in order to keep the living unit alive, the machine is endlessly trying to organize and control.

Stone Machine was exhibited during the event ‘Stone, Silicon’ at Art Space Tel Aviv, February, 2016.


Attending Machine | 2015

+ Museum für Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, Germany
+ Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Israel
+ Bloom Awards, Art Fair Cologn, Germany
+ Gwangju Media Art Festival, South Korea

At times dominated by constant exposure to social and personal information, FOMO (Fear of Missing Out) conditions our need to ‘attend’ virtually, as a statement, even more than to ‘be’ in the physical domain.

Attending Machine temporarily visualizes a feed of portraits taken from Facebook accounts. The participants have agreed to take part in a virtual Facebook event named ‘Donate your virtual identity to art’, only to be actualized within the machine.

The machine writes on a wall painted with an ultra-violate sensitive pigment. While passing over the surface, it turns on and off 96 UV LEDs in a carefully timed sequence, exposing the surface to UV and temporarily creating dots and dashes on the surface. Those are added, creating the ephemeral images.

The work questions the possibility of personal connection and intimacy on today’s digitally connected world. The Facebook platform is used as a case study from which data is collected. The attendees’ profile images are printed and fade as time passes. The portrait is no longer eternal and is based on the way the person depicted chose to represent him or herself in the social network. One by one, the images appear and fade away.

The act of printing makes each individual identity present for a moment within the masses. The ephemerality of the images poses questions: What is the point in an identity representation in the digital age and why do we so desperately want to be seen and ‘liked’ within the feed? Are we just another statistic in the virtual space? The Attending Machine aims to slow down our accelerating life stream, and to enable a technological poetic reflection on the state of being.

Attending Machine has been exhibited at
B3 Biennale, Museum Angewandte Kunst, Frankfurt, 2015
Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art, Israel, 2016
Art Fair Cologne Blooom Award 2016 Top 10 exhibition, 2017
International Cultural Industries Fair, Shenzhen, China, 2017


People You May Know

Israel Museum, Jerusalem, 2015 | Bonn Bundeskunsthalle Museum, 2016

The sound installation People You May Know consists of a collection of audio speakers hanging in the gallery space, playing monologues taken from personal Facebook profiles of the artist's friends. These sentences that she reads, using the first person form, are personal and revealing. The voice moves in space in a way which is determined by an algorithm generating the movement course in real time, creating a feeling of a speaker walking in the gallery.

The site specific installation was part of the group exhibition ‘Brief History of Humankind’, Israel Museum, curator: Tania Coen Uzzielli

The work was originally exhibited as part of the solo exhibition People You May Know at Hansen House, Jerusalem, 2014.


Scattered Light | 2015

@ National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia

Scattered Light visualizes reflections of museum visitors on the concept of ‘freedom’. It uses a selection of videos taken from the museum’s ‘It’s Your Story’ recording booths video database, where visitors are recorded sharing their associations on ‘freedom’.

A machine rides along a 9 meter rail, printing selected sentences and frames from the video collection. The printed faces and texts fade away as time passes, pointing to temporariness and fragility.

The machine writes on a large wall painted with an ultra-violate sensitive pigment. While passing over the surface, it turns on and off 96 UV LEDs in a carefully timed sequence, exposing the surface to UV and temporarily creating dots and dashes on the surface. Those are added into texts and images. Once a visual is printed, the machine turns and prints a new one on it fading memory.

Scattered Light was commissioned by National Museum of American Jewish History, Philadelphia (January 2015)
Curator Dr. Josh Perelman


People You May Know | 2014

Curator Karni Barzilay | 6 Dec 2014 - 16 Jan 2015

Curator Text:

Currently, the way we consume knowledge and information about people around us has changed. Our technological reality has created a distanced from the human-personal experience, translated into algorithms, codes, shapes, and is more mediated than ever. This change enables exposure to massive amounts of varied data; it is also a tool through which to study today's human behavior. New Media theorist Lev Manovich sees the emergence of social media in the mid-2000s as an opportunity to study social and cultural processes, through the ability to read and comment on, listen and follow the opinions, ideas and feelings of hundreds of millions of people, where there is no need to ask their permission.

In the past, social and cultural studies relied on two types of data: Surface Data, which is about lots of people, and Deep Data, which deals with few individuals or small groups. The first approach was mainly used in fields and methodologies that adapted quantitative data analysis such as statistics and mathematics. The second approach was typical of humanities and used for the fields of literature, arts and history. With the rise of social media, along with the development of computational tools that can process massive amounts of data, online information has become a database for social study, in which it is no longer necessary to choose between quantitative and qualitative methods. Today it is possible to learn from knowledge and insights created by a mass of people, which are available via the internet, thus to combine the two study approaches and their underlying types of data.

Liat Segal's first solo exhibition deals with the relationship between the human and the technological, as well as the way the self is represented in social media. The exhibition consists of four installations that light up the question of a personal dimension in a technological environment and the relationship between human and mechanical behavior. Segal's works combine components and elements of mechanics, software and electronics, which are influenced by the field of software and big data analysis, her previous fields of occupation. She uses these to examine the tension between the quantitative and content-related approaches, between the general and the unique, between the masses and the individual.

The title of the exhibition – People You May Know is drawn from Facebook's suggestion to its users, to connect with other users in order to expand their circle of friends. As a rhizomatic data mechanism operating by the principle of interpersonal connections expansion, this Facebook suggestion raises questions about the types of relationships and our identity's definition within Facebook. Segal's quest for the possibility of personal identity, personalization, and intimacy to exist on the internet, has led her to use the Facebook platform as a case study as well as a field of study from which she samples data for her works.

The sound installation People You May Know consists of a collection of audio speakers hanging in the gallery space. Each playing monologues are taken from personal Facebook profiles of the artist's friends. These sentences that she reads, using the first person form, are personal and revealing. Segal acts as a researcher, processing and categorizing the texts as social data in a pseudo-scientific "experiment" of profiles identities and narratives identification and appropriation. She thus creates a process of a new identity formation which is composed of multiple voices and narratives sampled from Facebook.

The voice moves in space in a way which is determined by an algorithm that chooses the movement course in real-time, it creates a sense of a speaker walking in the gallery. Although the voice lacks body or identity, it does have a location in space, which is represented in the work Location 2.0 exhibited in the adjacent space. Using shining objects that are originally used as a survival rescue blanket to maintain body temperature, this work represents a mathematical graph of the voice movement in space. The objects hanging on the wall are inflated in accordance with an x and y-axis system while pointing to the location of voice in space. Although she uses a mathematical model that supposedly represents the world, the model's physical expression is very much momentary, made of air.

In the installation Writing Machine, a computerized machine is drawing with a paintbrush and water on the gallery floor. Repeatedly and endlessly, the machine scribbles names taken from the artist's list of virtual friends. One by one, the names are written down and then erased (evaporated). The act of drawing makes some of the individual identities present for a moment within the masses while revealing an additional layer to Segal's entire process in this exhibition – the destruction and reconstruction of identity representations. The mass of cylinders, installation Placeholder at the Hansen House patio presents a coded image – the well-known Facebook face icon. This image is made of a surface covered with roll-shaped bodies, originally used as a cosmetics product packages, dark on one side and silver on the other. Together, they create an entire image, a sort of material translation of pixels, where in one particular moment and location of the spectator's sight, this translation consolidates into a generic face. The well-known face icon represents the moment when we join Facebook, the first step of identity construction in it. That very "determining moment" when we change this generic image into our own profile picture poses a question: Have we turned from an icon into a private person, or are we just another statistic in the virtual space?

Karni Barzilay

Wrote about the exhibition:



Sand Printer | Future Regressives | 2013

Future Regressives are futuristic fossils drawn by a mechanical printer on a mixture of sand and salt. These fossils contain many details, as if they were drawn by an extremely accurate and never fatigue hand.
In contrast to the past fossils, the future regressives have a short memory. Once drawn they will be easily erased, allowing new visuals to appear and be forgotten.

Sand Fish stop motion animation | Digital images are physically drawn by the printer. The sand prints are photographed and returned to the digital space in the form of stop-motion animation:

Sand Printer was built for the Venice Biennale 2014 Israeli Pavilion in collaboration with Guy Hoffman.


Confession Machine | 2014

The Confession Machine prints online texts that fade away as time passes, just like the confession itself. The machine prints on a surface painted with an ultra violate sensitive pigment. While passing over the surface, it turns on and off 16 UV LEDs in a carefully timed sequence, temporarily creating dots and dashes on the surface. Those are added into letters, words and sentences.

The intimate and revealing printed texts are taken from social networks, showing the lightness of confessions via online channels today. People today willingly share personal details of their lives via the digital medium. At the same time the importance people give to online confessions is small and temporary in its nature. One sees a reviling status, may get excited, like, comment, even share, and forget it. That is the life cycle of an online confession.
It is also a paradox as all this personal information now stays on a virtual limbo, forever exposed.

The Confession Machine uses the technology of repeatable writing using light (developed by the Bloomfield Science Museum Jerusalem) to show the temporary nature and lightheadedness of online confessions. A confession is printed and fades away. A new confession immediately takes our attention. Sometime a confession starts fading ever before the entire sentence was completed.

The Confession machine was commissioned by Artists' Residence Herzelya, January 2014.

Wrote about the Confession Machine:



Wall To Wall Carpeting | 2013

by Liat Segal & Shahar Binyamini
Dancers: Iyar Elezra, Shamel Pitts

Three hundred liters of paint are slowly flowing through the dance studio, changing the space. The change is so slow that it is hard to notice at any single moment. As time goes by, however, one may suddenly realize that the world has completely changed.
The work was presented for the first time as part of Plaza 2013 at Bat Sheva Dance Company.


Microfilm | 2014

@ Elsewhere Gallery by Adi Dahan | Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art

Elsewhere Gallery is a temporary gallery founded by Adi Dahan under the exhibition "Rising Star" in the Herzliya Museum of Contemporary Art. The gallery itself operates outside the museum walls and is being broadcasted back to museum through a web video call.

The work is making use of two machines built by Segal; the first (Heart for the tin man, 2012) is a painting machine, dropping acrylic paint on the surface below it at precise amounts and positions. The machine was used for painting in response to voices and music that surrounded it. This work results in a series of paintings, each one originated by a different source of information. While the paintings seem chaotic they actually have structure. As in many cases, the alleged randomness is a result of a sequence of strict choices.
By minor changes to the machine settings and replacing its painting device with a macro lens camera, the painting machine transforms into a scanner, scanning its own former outputs. This second machine results in the video work. The scanner navigates along the paintings as if they were a map and the paint drops were a topographic landscape. The macro lens reveals details that are invisible to the naked eye, some of which look as if they were taken by a lab’s microscope.

The new system works in interaction with museum visitors. Visitor’s motions are captured by video, affecting in real time the scanner’s navigation as a physical-human remote control.
The flow in this work is circular. Digital data gets a physical-mechanical manifestation, then sampled back into the digital world.

The name of the work “Microfilm” implies the analogue data storage mechanism that was in use before today’s digital data storage systems. Segal’s machine gives a strong association to the movements, magnification visuals and sounds of the old school microfilm reader.


Hatch | Amsterdam Light Festival | 2013

by Liat Segal & Hagar Elazari

The Hatch is a peephole to endless inner depths. It's a kinetic light sculpture half buried in the ground. Standing afar, it looks like a transparent cube covering illuminated sticks resembling a ladder. When looking from above, one sees an endless tunnel to the bottom of the earth.
The Hatch is manipulating space, building an infinite chamber through light.

The work was commissioned by the Amsterdam Light Festival, December 2013 and by the Jerusalem Light Festival, June 2014.

The sculpture is placed between a mirror and a half transparent mirror, behind which the viewer stands, seeing endless reflections.


Heart for the Tin Man | A Show of Robotic Action Painting & Music | 2012

by Liat Segal & Assaf Talmudi

Does a machine, any machine, create alienation just by virtue of being a machine? The answer, as far as we are concerned, is negative. The performance Heart for the Tin Man is a celebration of homemade machines, which have nothing to do with usefulness or usability – in the sense we usually attach to these terms.

At the center of the performance stands a large robot, painting enormous abstract paintings in acrylic. The robot paints on a large canvas in response to the human voices and musical instruments that surround it. The audio and visual structures are open, and only subordinated to the interaction between the robotic parts and the human playing.

Heart for the Tin Man was the opening show at Fresh Paint 5.

During the show Assaf Talmudi (accordion), along with our special guests Shlomi Shaban (piano) and Ronald Boersen (violin), played music which in turn activated the painting machine and twelve robotic drums.

The sound was translated automatically at real time to movements of the painting machine and the release of acrylic paint by four pumps.


The Originals Factory | 2011

The Originals Factory is a fusing together and questioning digital, mechanic and plastic approaches to art, abstraction and originality. It is basically a DIY robot, built and programmed to create landscape paintings in the style of American abstract expressionism.
The computer system uses real time video input to control motor movement and pump actions to release paint drops on a large canvas. The drops are then drawn downwards courtesy of gravity, leaving thin colorful line marks.

The Originals Factory was first presented at the DLD Tel Aviv conference in November 2011.

The graphical language achieved by this mechanism is a language of lines. Instead of pixels creating the image, we get vertical graphical units, or Vixels.
Our mechanism allows us to control a few parameters for each such Vixel; its Horizontal position, length and color.

Other types of online data were used for prints, such as Google Trends and real time generated surveys.

Wrote about the project:

Make Magazine
Laughing Squid


Interactive bus stop for Pepsi Max

Directed by Vania Heymann | Sound by Roy Kafri

An interactive bus stop in Tel Aviv, made for Pepsi Max Isreal with Alenbi Concept House.