This Art Wants to Tickle and Hug You


, by Alan Rath

"Did you let that art downstairs hug and tickle you?" is a thing I just asked another human.

I wasn't expecting to say those words at today's Art Fair preview. After all, we're standing in the shadow of Very Serious Work.

And yet, that is exactly what happened.

Gimmicky? Oh, yes. But there's also something so frustratingly endearing about it. I blame the pink ostrich feathers. They reach out and beg you to come closer.

Fortunately, it lives for deep embraces. Designed by MIT electrical engineer and digital sculptor Alan Rath, this art is programmed to adore you. It nods off when humans leave the room and perks up when someone enters. Programmed to behave autonomously, Positively's every pulsation is random, so it will never grow predictable. Think of it as an art pet.

Find it in the Hosfelt Gallery, downstairs. And don't be bashful. Tickling you is the sole purpose of its existence.

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