This Art Robot Is Even More Vain Than You (Yes, Even You)

Daniel Armengol Altayó's '#artificialselfie' machine is caught in an endless cycle of taking and uploading selfies.

by Kevin Holmes
May 9 2016, 1:00pm

Few could say there aren't enough self-portraits on Instagram, but a recent piece by Spanish artist Daniel Armengol Altayó sees a different kind of selfie being uploaded to the social media site. For #artificialselfie, Altayó created a machine that holds a camera, faces a mirror, and constantly takes pictures of itself.

It then uploads these photos, dozens and dozens of them, to Instagram, churning one out after the other in a damning commentary on the obessive culture. The photos are tagged #artificialselfie and include shots of the machine stoically sitting there as people shuffle around it, along with the people who went along to see it.

These people are captured either staring into the mirror, aware or unaware that their image is being uploaded to the internet. Or, taking their own selfies behind #artificialselfie bot in some kind of meta-selfie/selfie-eating-itself-type thing. Inselfption. 

You can check out the machine in action in the video above, watching as it goes through the motions with its mechanical arm methodically and sedately punching in hashtags. "A selfie is a paradigmatic way to prove to the contemporary world that one exists," Altayó notes on his website. "The machine expresses this need by taking selfies of itself and sharing them on Instagram. The piece, performing tireless the same action over and over again, questions our relationship with technology. On one hand, we teach machines to understand us, giving them the ability to replicate gestures and habits in a surprisingly human way. On the other hand, as we all seem to repeat the same behaviors with a given technology, we ourselves start acting as predictable machines."

Photo by Daniel Armengol Altayó via

Photo by Daniel Armengol Altayó via

Photo by Daniel Armengol Altayó via

Check out the project on Instagram here, and visit Daniel Armengol Altayó's website for more. 

We're no selfie-taking robots, but you should follow The Creators Project on Instagram


Earth’s Radiation Sets This Matrix of Motors in Motion

A Gallery Becomes a Floating Robotic Dance Orchestra

Oculus Rift Headset and Controllers Puts You Inside a Robot's Body