Them Fucking Robots

Laura Kikauka

1988, 02:50 minutes, colour


The work consists of two robots which simply make love. The action is both simple and complicated because love-making is really a complex activity. Cycles within and between two beings lock and unlock: heart, gut, lungs, muscles and genitals.
It would have been easier to have made two machines which crank away blindly like oil derricks or sewing machines, but this would hardly have done justice to human sex. Instead, they have tried to endow their machines with the ability to sense each other's moods, responding more or less in kind - sometimes leading, sometimes following, sometimes both lost in frenzy or daydream.

To ensure that the two partners come together as individuals, born of different backgrounds and inclinations, Laura and Norman built their respective machines separately and without consulting each other. They agreed upon only a few fundamental guidelines: (1) that both sculptures were to approximate full human scale; (2) that Laura would build the female and Norman the male; (3) that they would use a certain two-part electro-mechanical device to represent the sex organs.

Created in separation, the two robots also have separate "lives": they plug into the wall separately and have no wires crossing between them. At best, each machine can only guess the other's current state of arousal. And yet, of course, TFR aspires to be a single sculpture. The underlying duality only heightens the importance of that oneness.

Rental and Sales

Single Screening Rental


Educational Purchase DVD (Bluray +$15)


5 Year Educational Streaming License, Digital File with DVD Circulation Copy


Gallery Exhibition and Installation, complete Media Request form for quote

Institutional Archival Acquisition, complete Media Request form for quote

Curators and programmers, please contact to receive a login and password to preview Vtape titles online.

Screening and exhibition rentals and archival acquisitions include public performance rights; educational purchases or licenses include rights for classroom screenings and library circulation. When placing an order the customer agrees to our general online terms and conditions. Payment (or a purchase order number) and a signed licensing agreement must be received before media can be shipped to the client.

Critical Writing

Showing off the '80s
by Peter Goddard. The Toronto Star, Feb. 10, 2007.
The Curatorial Incubator v.4: That 80s Show
by Lisa Steele. Toronto: Vtape, 2007.