RESTORING A SEMI-MOBILE DOMESTIC ROBOT
BY SILVANA ANNICHIARICO, BARBARA FERRIANI
In 1986, Denis Santachiara designed Ines, a semi-mobile, domestic robot commissioned by Kartell for the exhibition The domestic project at the Triennale of Milan. Drawing inspiration from the theme “The terminal home”, Santachiara created “a domestic theatre, a section of a home inhabited by an artificial being – a species of robot that controls and explains her role to the public”
(Aspesi N., 1986). On occasion of a subsequent showing of Ines at the exhibition The things we are (Triennale Design Museum, 2010) the Conservation Laboratory at the museum under- took to restore the work, tackling problems linked to the intrinsic obsolescence of a complex object characterised by numerous interactive elements.
In order to avoid compromising the artist’s original vision, the accurate definition of the conservation strategy and various treatment methods were investigated according to the limits posed by the work and the exhibition deadlines. At this stage, the decision of whether or not to accept the degradation of the original technological components restoring only the synthetic surfaces and forgoing a total reinstatement of the processors-, or to substitute the missing or broken parts and “up-date” the work, was broached.