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  • Neurotic Machines, Rachel Rayns. Image courtesy of FACT. Photo: Brian Slater

Neurotic Machines by Rachel Rayns

Build Your Own: Tools for Sharing

Rachel Rayns has spent the last two years at the Raspberry Pi Foundation, formulating creative uses for the small, low cost computer as their artist in residence and Creative Producer. She is putting these skills to use in Neurotic Machines, her commission for Build Your Own: Tools for Sharing which examines the practical uses of robotics when combined with horticulture.

Rayns developed a love of film and technology at University and subsequently set up the Soup Lab, a space equipped with darkrooms, editing suites and film labs for budding creatives such as herself. Her films have been shown at venues such as the Whitechapel Gallery and even, Glastonbury Music Festival and she has run workshops at Tate Modern and Brighton Photo Fringe. A regular at tech conventions such as ThingsCon and Makerland, Rachel marries technology and creativity in her interesting projects.

Neurotic Machines, Rachel Rayns. Image Courtesy of FACT. Photo: Brian Slater

One of these projects includes her most recent commission for Build Your Own, Neurotic Machines. A network of alternative robotic gardening systems, part of a larger Internet of Things, the systems will preside over allotments and farms all over the country. More locally, the mother system of these robots will call FACT home for the next three months, monitoring the light level, humidity, temperature and feeding of plants. Neurotic Machines encourages an active participation in these networks and workshops will also be run by the Raspberry Pi Foundation throughout the exhibition on how to build your own gardening robot using Raspberry Pi.

Neurotic Machines is currently showing at FACT as part of Build Your Own: Tools for sharing until 31 August 2015. Rachel will also be running a Robot Gardening workshop on 28 June and 11 July - book your place here.

Build Your Own is a FACT and Crafts Council partnership exhibition in association with Norfolk Museums Service and co-curated by curator and cultural programme director Lauren Parker and Clare Cumberlidge of creative communications company Thirteen Ways. 

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