Mar 212012
 

Perfume 「Spring of Life」 (Teaser) – YouTube.

H/T to the Craftzine blog

This is a teaser trailer for a new song from the Japanese pop group, Perfume.

I agree with Brooklynn at Craft. This color changing dress is indeed cool. As is the song. What I find most interesting, however, is that the dress is placed on bodies that are robotic and puppet-like. So far the characters are shown in fairly passive positions, not doing much more than the Geminoid-F mannequin android about which Janet M. blogged last month.

It is unclear whether there will be a longer video released with the song. From this brief teaser it would seem that the portrayal of cyborg-femininity is one that is passive and devoid of power. The beats are played out in luminescence across a body that cannot even meet the gaze of the camera.

Can’t we do better than fantasies of pretty, puppet-like women in flashing dresses? To what end should a dress blink? And how can we leverage the electrified garment to challenge mainstream representations of passive femininity?

Cross-posted at The Spiral Dance.

Feb 142012
 

A lovely young woman sits with her purse in her lap and her phone in her hands. She coyly smiles, looks around, and yawns as she waits in a department store. If a stranger begins to pester her, she ignores him. This scenario is fairly ordinary. However, this is no ordinary young woman: this is an android mannequin responding to curious shoppers from the inside of a window display.

As part of a Valentine’s Day promotion, Tokyo department store Takashimaya will be displaying Dr. Hiroshi Ishiguro’s Geminoid-F android mannequin in its store window. The life-like mannequin has a set of 60 different facial expressions at its disposal to lure in and interact with passing shoppers. The robot is connected to a Kinect sensor complete with facial recognition software that allows for it to have a unique response to each person who passes by.  Continue reading »