Totemobile makes Transformers seem tame


The “Totemobile” by Brooklyn- based Mexican – American artist and roboticist, Chico Macmurtrie, is a kinetic transforming robot that morphs a Citroen DS automobile into a 20-meter tall “totem” with human-like features. Similar in conception to the giant robots from Michael Bay’s summer blockbuster film “Transformers”, MacMurtrie’s machine instead trades CGI mastery for mechanical performance and hydraulic lifting in order to suspend this creature into the air. The Citroen was chosen for the project because MacMurtrie saw its connection to Mexican-American “low-rider” culture where people modify their cars as a mode of personal expression that ultimately resulted in intricate artistic cultural icons. In any case, the resulting form is an ominous vision into the future of artificial intelligence and advanced mechanization.

Jonah Brucker-Cohen