Mari Velonaki is a media artist and researcher who is working in the field of interactive installation art since 1995. Her practice engages the spectator/participant with digital and robotic “characters” in interplays stimulated by sensory triggered interfaces. Her innovative human-machine interfaces promote intimate and immersive relationships between participants and interactive artworks.
Mari was awarded a PhD in Media Arts at the College of Fine Arts, University of New South Wales in 2003. Since 2003, Mari has been working as a senior researcher at the Australian Centre for Field Robotics. In 2006 she co-founded with David Rye the Centre for Social Robotics within the Australian Centre for Field Robotics at the University of Sydney. In 2007 Mari was awarded an Australia Council for the Arts Visual Arts Fellowship in recognition of her body of work. In 2009 she was awarded a prestigious Australian Research Council ARF/QEII Fellowship (2009-2013) for the creation of a new robot. This research that investigates human-robot interactions in order to develop an understanding of the physicality that is possible between a human and a robot.
Velonaki’s installations have been exhibited widely, including: Gyeonggi Museum of Modern Art, Korea; ZENDAI Museum of Modern Art, Shanghai; Wood Street Galleries, Pittsburgh; Millennium Museum - Beijing Biennale of Electronic Arts; Ars Electronica, Linz; Biennale of Electronic Arts, Perth; Adelaide Biennial of Australian Art; Conde Duque Museum, Madrid; European Media Arts Festival, Osnabrück; Te Papa Tongarewa Museum of New Zealand; Arco, Madrid; Museum of Contemporary Art, Sydney; Queensland Art Gallery/GOMA; Art Gallery of New South Wales; Ton-Build-Spektakel, Zurich; Aros Aarhus Museum of Modern Art, Denmark.