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Creative Robotics Lab (CRL)

CRL Director, A/Prof Velonaki with "Geminoid F"

This is a robot

The CRL and Social Robotics
CRL Director, A/Prof Mari Velonaki on CUSP
Professor Jill Bennett with "Diamandini"


"Diamandini" at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London
"Diamandini" at the Victoria & Albert Museum, London

Creative Robotics Lab (CRL)

The Creative Robotics Lab (CRL) is a cross-disciplinary research environment committed to examining human interactions with three-dimensional robotic agents and responsive structures within the context of experimental arts and social robotics. Founded in 2011 by Associate Professor Mari Velonaki, the lab aims to provide a structured environment that facilitates the creation of experimental interfaces and the promotion of human-robot interaction in physical spaces. The CRL engages in innovative practices, advancing the fields of media arts and social robotics through the novel presentation of robotic systems in public settings and the development of original, ground-breaking technologies and interface designs. 

The CRL fosters interdisciplinary collaboration, and has established productive partnerships with world-leading institutions and roboticists. The CRL is in partnership with the School of Computer Science and Engineering (CSE) and the School of Psychology at the University of New South Wales and the Australian Centre for Field Robotics (ACFR) at the University of Sydney—where Mari Velonaki is an Adjunct Associate Professor and Co-Director of the Centre for Social Robotics (CSR). Its researchers collaborate with major arts and science institutions across the globe, including:

  • Victoria & Albert Museum, London;
  • National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (AIST), Japan;
  • Watanabe Laboratory, University of Tokyo;
  • Intelligent Robotics Laboratory, Osaka University; 
  • Hiroshi Ishiguro Laboratory, Japan; 
  • Fuji Xerox (Japan), Co. Ltd;
  • Department of Art, Cornell University; and
  • CSIRO (Telecommunications and Industrial Physics: Nanoscience and Systems).

Encouraging the development of transdisciplinary projects, the CRL produces work that impacts significantly several fields of research. NSW Chief Scientist and Engineer, Mary O'Kane, commented at the launch of the CRL on the urgent necessity of advancing the field of social robotics, and on the apt and fruitful partnership between the creative arts and robotics research. By seeking to fulfil the tandem goals of technological innovation and artistic outcomes, the CRL brings to the study of social robotics the unique advantages of creative experimentation and artistic practice. It is particularly well placed to provide the appropriate technological infrastructure and intellectual environment that true experimental practice requires. The Laboratory's collaborative partnerships bring together diverse expertise in robotic systems, sensing, perception, artificial intelligence and cognitive architectures, cognitive psychology and media arts.


Associate Professor Mari Velonaki

Deputy Director
Dr Petra Gemeinboeck

Adjunct Fellows
Associate Professor David Rye
Dr Rob Saunders
Associate Professor Fabio Ramos

Postdoctoral Fellow
Dr David Silvera-Tawil

Associate Professor Maurice Pagnucco
Dr Alex Davies
Kate Dunn
Dr Rochelle Haley
Dr Kerstin Haring
Dr Jeffrey Koh
Dr Elena Knox
Mr Brad Miller

Visiting Fellows
Professor Katsumi Watanabe
Professor Yoshio Matsumoto

Research Students
Mr Brad Miller (PhD Candidate)
Mr Adrian Ball (PhD Candidate ACFR/NIEA)
Ms Kirsty Boyle (MFA Candidate)
Scott Brown (PhD Candidate)
Belinda Dunstan (MFA Candidate)
Jorge Forseck (PhD Candidate)
Michael Gratton (PhD Candidate)
Eliot Rosenberg (PhD Candidate)
Deborah Turnbull (PhD Candidate)
Cecilia Yan (MA Candidate)