Category Archives: News

Salon at Synergia Ranch

A Salon and Performance / Archive Convening

Hosted by Kathelin Gray, Ash Smith, and Robert Twomey

Thursday, April 25, 5:00PM to Sunday, April 28 12:00PM MDT

Synergia Ranch Retreat Center
26 Synergia Rd
Santa Fe, NM 87508

Symposium on Media Literacy in the Age of AI

I’m co-hosting this symposium on “Media Literacy in the Age of Artificial Intelligence” April 12, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. at the Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts at 1300 Q St. This is a part of our UNL Grand Challenges Planning Grant award with PI Bryan Wang.

Discover how AI shapes our digital lives and connect with experts on AI’s societal impact. Attendance is free. Lunch and snacks will be provided.

We will also screen the films from our AI Filmmaking Hackathon:

Featured Speakers:

Kjerstin Thorson (Brandt Endowed Professor of Political Communication (@msucomartsci ) explores digital media’s impact on news consumption in “Digital Platforms, Algorithms and the Future of News Consumption.”

Jevin D. West (Associate Professor and Co-Founder of the Center for an Informed Public @uwischool) uncovers AI’s role in misinformation in “Misinformation was Already Challenging — Then Came Generative AI.”

Cindy Shen (Professor and Co-Director of the Computational Communication Research Lab @ucdavis ) equips us to combat visual misinformation in “From Photoshop to Midjourney: Building Resilience Against Visual Misinformation.”

Fish Phone Booth at Without Walls 2024

We just wrapped a weekend presenting our Fish Phonebooth at Without Walls 2024. Underwater acoustics, immersive audio, haptic feedback, interspecies communication. This phone booth sound bath has it all. It was a tremendous show: we had everyone from young kids to 80 year olds to retired polar explorers experience the piece.

This is a playtest of a project Ash Eliza Smith and I are developing in partnership with Birch Aquarium and that La Jolla Playhouse.

More info here

Continue reading Fish Phone Booth at Without Walls 2024

Second Annual AI Filmmaking Hackathon

On March 30th we hosted our second annual AI Filmmaking Hackathon. Co-organized with Dan Novy (novysan) and Ash Eliza Smith.

Over the course of 8.5 hours, our student teams made 8 short films dealing with true fakes and fake truths. Thank you @cinema16unl@disembodbods@novysan42, and all of our participants for making this happen. And thank you Kwakiutl Dreher, Bryan Wang, and Phillip Alvelda for serving as VIP judges and Robert Tercek as special guest facilitator.

Films dropping soon at

AI Theater Performance at the Johnny Carson Center

We premiered a 15 minute performance of our project Theater of Latent Possibilities at Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts Demo Day 2024 on March 22nd. This project employs generative AI for real-time performance, hinging on the improvisatory dynamics of human-machine interaction. Here we worked with the archive from Synergia Ranch / Institute of Ecotechnics, in advances of our project in April.

Stay tuned, more to come!

Project Leads: Robert Twomey and Ash Eliza Smith
Project team: Reid Brockmeier, Sam Bendix, Alex Gee, Olli Jenkins, Hank Ball, Lincoln Graham

Late-Breaking Work at HRI 2024

Amy, Hortense and I have written about our project Beyond the Black Box for Human Robot Interaction (HRI) 2024 in Boulder, Co.

Beyond the Black Box: Human Robot Interaction through Human Robot Performances

Amy Eguchi, Hortense Gerardo, and Robert Twomey. 2024. Beyond the Black Box: Human Robot Interaction through Human Robot Performances. In Companion of the 2024 ACM/IEEE International Conference on Human- Robot Interaction (HRI ’24 Companion), March 11–14, 2024, Boulder, CO, USA. ACM, New York, NY, USA, 5 pages.

Worlds in Play at ASU MIX 2024

Together with Ash Eliza Smith, I’m playtesting a new interspecies theater piece at Worlds in Play! Join us this January 3-7 at ASU Media and Immersive eXperience (MIX) Center in Mesa, Arizona and step into the artist’s studio as they experiment with adventurous participatory projects at various stages of development, including immersive theatre, XR, Alternate Reality Games, Table Top Role Playing Games, social practice, food experiences, collaborations with AI, parties, and larps.

Continue reading Worlds in Play at ASU MIX 2024

NYC Media Lab x Bertelsmann AI and Creative Industry Challenge

I lead this fabulous team with Patrick Coleman, Ash Smith, Ryan Schmaltz, and Jinku Kim for the NYC Media Lab and Bertelsmann Creative Industries and AI Challenge. Our project employs AI for pre-preproduction (co-creation and world building) and performance (scripts as live artifacts, real-time AI).

It’s fascinating to work with the other three teams (startups), and connect with BMG, Penguin Randomhouse, RTL, and others. I’m grateful for the opportunity!

Continue reading NYC Media Lab x Bertelsmann AI and Creative Industry Challenge