Timothy Noble’s Semi-Automatic Chalkboard is an automated drawing machine that uses servo motors and open source software to render images on a chalkboard from an early twentieth century schoolhouse. The images being produced are interpretations of sketches by Charles E. Burchfield that were made in preparation for the oil painting Grain Elevators, 1932-38.
The drawings will be performed daily and erased before the next day’s performance. Images will be rotated throughout the run of the exhibition. The work is both a performing automaton and a kinetic sculptural object. Many of the components that make up the actual device were created through the use of the technologies that the device employs.
This artwork could not have been built without the use of numerous open source software programs and the help of various individuals. The work was first shown in Western New York at Galeries NFS in 2012.