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image: Robert Davy, Kerry Richens, Linda Davy, Stephen Barrass Zizi The Affectionate Couch Interactive sculpture

Robert Davy, Kerry Richens, Linda Davy and Stephen Barrass
Australia

Zizi The Affectionate Couch
Interactive sculpture

Collection of the artists


Zizi the affectionate couch is a couch that supports you not only physically but also emotionally. She is a hybrid mixture of a shaved poodle, a fluffy cat and an exotic sea slug. Zizi growls when sat upon, purrs when touched and groans with delight when you stroke her fur. If left alone, she mews for attention.

In stark contrast to a Tamagotchi or an Aibo, Zizi the affectionate couch is a tactile robot – a couch that supports you emotionally as well as physically.

Inspired by the fluffy flight deck on board Barbarella: Queen of the Galaxy’s space-ship, Zizi the affectionate couch is an experiment in human computer interface, making a move away from the screen and mouse based interactives that are the dominant paradigm in media art works.

Zizi the affectionate couch’s reactions are triggered by touch sensitive cables, sewn into the upholstery of the couch. These sensors activate nine vibrating audio devices that simulate purring. Digital signal processing and behavioural algorithms determine her responses.