©2014 Lorenz Potthast

19th Art Division New Face Award

Communication with the Future – The Petroglyphomat

Interactive artx

Lorenz POTTHAST [Germany]


The Petroglyphomat is a “positive vandalism” machine which works as a mobile, digital milling machine, that can send messages to a distant future by engraving them into ancient monuments.
The wish for self-assertion over ones transience is a desire that is deeply embedded in the human nature. What we understand today as culture is fundamentally based on the ability to convey communication to future generations.
The concept is a strategical reaction to established power relations and furthermore questions the traditional concept of the people in power who are writing history. The project offers a substantial theoretical background and an experimental approach for practical philosophizing about the connection between tradition, transience and our understanding of past, present and future.

Reason for Award

Every time information is digitized and seems to become more convenient, the media (floppy discs, CD- ROMs, etc.) used to store it vanish from the market, leaving us thoroughly perplexed at what to do with these now inoperative devices. On the other hand, it has been pointed out that the information carved in stone by ancient people remains extant. By donning a computer-controlled milling machine and carving messages directly in the street, the artist’s splendid idea, intended to communicate with the future, is laudable for its positive approach toward media. We look forward to his future projects. (FUJIMOTO Yukio)