Peter Coppin | Main menu | Projects | Telepresence art | Petting Zoo [1997]

For a more detailed description of Petting Zoo, see pages 53-59 of Cyborg Surragate Self.

Gallery attendees heard the sound of a ringing telephone coming from the interior of an aluminum isolation booth.

Participants entered the booth and answered the ringing telephone. A TV monitor in the booth showed a robotically encased human arm and a living, breathing rabbit on a field of grass.

By pushing buttons on the telephone, participants were able to move the joints of the human arm in order to direct the arm towards the rabbit. Using this technique, they could successfully pet the bunny rabbit. By speaking into the phone, they could even speak to it.
Rabbit on screen

In addition, a miniature TV studio in a hidden room broadcast Petting Zoo's signals to the gallery booth. The rabbit also existed in this separate minature TV studio.
Petting Zoo hidden room


Project Directors: Peter Coppin and Alexi Morrissey
Portable TV set design and fabrication: Michael Parris, Alexi Morrissey, and Peter Coppin
Booth design and fabrication: Michael Parris and Alexi Morrissey
Electronics and computer programming: Martin C. Martin
Exoskeleton mechanical design and fabrication: Peter Coppin and Michael Parris
Bunny managment: Laura Shaffalo
Photo documentation: Rob Long