NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain”
24 July 2019
The pedestrian tunnel of Lugano-Besso changes its appearance. From September 2, 2019, it will host "NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain" - an installation that combines artistic and scientific research, between contemporary art and artificial intelligence.

As part of the L*3-Lugano Living Lab project, the City of Lugano and IDSIA Dalle Molle Institute for Artificial Intelligence (USI-SUPSI) are pleased to announce the official presentation to the public of "NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain", which will take place on September 2, 2019.

"NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain" is an installation created by the visual artist Alex Dorici, whose work has always been focused on the experience of public space, and the scientist Luca Maria Gambardella. This creative collaboration is perfectly reflected in the installation, combining aesthetics and content, and devised to bring the public closer to the subject of artificial intelligence.

The installation will be on permanent display in the pedestrian tunnel of Lugano-Besso. This part of the city, known for the constant flow of travellers transiting to reach the railway station and citizens walking to and from the city center, determined the choice of the authors who sought a strong and continuous interaction with passers-by. The installation is in fact an artificial neuronal network: it is a digital system composed of neurons and connections that reproduces certain functions of our brain and is able to learn concepts from examples. "NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain" observes what happens inside the tunnel, interprets the gestures of the hand and learns from the images that visitors choose to show, and then returns a new version.

The interactive work of urban art harmoniously combines 16 LED monitors that display in real time the reasoning of the neuronal network. The structure, made up of light sources and 700 metres of red and fluorescent ropes, represents the nervous system, winding through the 100 metres of the tunnel.

The schedule of inaugural event, on Monday, September 2, 2019 at the pedestrian tunnel of Lugano-Besso, is as follows:

  • 11:30 - Institutional address
  • 14:00 - Live television broadcast of the installation during the national conference "Digital Switzerland 2019” in Basel
  • 18:30 - Public opening, followed by cocktail with DJ set

The opening of "NeuralRope#1. Inside an Artificial Brain" takes place during the national Digital Day 2019. More information on this event is available at the official website: www.digitaltag.swiss

Biographies of the authors:

Alex Dorici

Visual artist, born in Lugano in 1979. After graduating in painting and engraving, he continued his training in Paris, from 2005 to 2010. He returned to Lugano in 2010, where he focused on artistic installations in urban spaces. His site-specific artworks use materials such as ropes, tiles, tubes and adhesive tape to alter the perception of everyday locations. Since 2006, he has exhibited his works in museums and galleries, both in Switzerland and abroad.

Luca Maria Gambardella
The scientist Luca Maria Gambardella was born in Saronno in 1962. He lives and works in Ticino. He obtained a degree and a doctorate in computer science, developing a strong interest in artificial intelligence. He studies the ability of machines to learn and how robots can be autonomous. He is director of the Dalle Molle Institute for Artificial Intelligence (USI-SUPSI). In addition to scientific research, he dedicates himself to art with passion: he paints, makes sculptures and writes novels.