Maria Tsilogianni


Maria is an architect, designer and researcher, having completed her architectural studies in Greece and holding an MA in Design: Critical Practice (Goldsmiths University, UK). Her interdisciplinary research and practice move between spatial and object design, and future studies. Using mixed media (both digital and physical) and different crafting techniques, she experiments with mechanisms and (im)material constructs invading domestic environments and disrupting everyday performativity to reinvent relationships between humans, non-humans and the built environment.

Lately, she is questioning normalized human-machine interactions centered on functionality and ‘intelligence’ in order to expand the human-machine entanglement towards more open-ended and creative ways. These themes are currently explored as part of her practice-based PhD at the Centre for PostDigital Cultures (Coventry University, UK), with funding from the UKRI (UK) and the Onassis Foundation (GR). In 2020 she was also awarded the Artworks Fellowship (funded by the Stavros Niarchos Foundation) under the category of Visual Arts. She combines her research interests with her passion for experimenting with crafting techniques and diverse materials to animate the ine"able and peculiar inner life of everyday objects around her. Domesticity becomes her primary playground for questioning pre-scripted normativities and surfacing the agency of non-humans in informing everyday practices.

Idiotic agents, as animate objects interacting with each other and with humans, are placed in domestic environments to expand human-machine entanglements beyond functionality. Challenging constituted models of ‘intelligence’, they exhibit absurd and unpredictable behaviors, provoking inhabitants to explore them, to #gure them out and build relationships with them. An agent that has a thing for parties and bubbles, obsessed over one particular song that randomly disturbs moments of silence; an agent constantly asking for care but equally caring for others, that loves singing to plants or sunbathing for hours, one that best expresses itself through weather phenomena; agents that like to be chatty with each other through a language incomprehensible to humans, and agents with secret love a"airs. But most importantly, idiotic agents are acting on their very own terms instead of being commanded.