Behavioral Objects I

Behavioral Objects I

A Case Study: Céleste Boursier-Mougenot

Edited by Samuel Bianchini and Emanuele Quinz

Distributed for Sternberg Press




Three grand pianos slowly make their way through the large exhibition space allotted to them, sometimes bumping into one another. These animate objects, which constitute offroad (2014), a work by the artist Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, appear to be living beings, each with its own behavior. They are perfect examples of behavioral objects, whose little-known history dates back to the avant-garde and the emergence of cybernetics.

What exactly is a behavioral object? How can it be analyzed, understood, theorized, experienced, and how can we conceive of works that possess the faculty of action and reaction to their environment and public? Examining three works by Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, this book tackles these questions and defines a new field of research and practice.

Copublished with École nationale supérieure des Arts Décoratifs – Paris PSL Research University

ContributorsSamuel Bianchini, Céleste Boursier-Mougenot, Jaime DeSimone, Jean-Paul Laumond, Florent Levillain, Emanuele Quinz, Bénédicte Ramade, Trevor Smith, Elisabetta Zibetti


$22.00 T ISBN: 9783956791727 224 pp. | 6.5 in x 9 in 50 color illus., 52 b&w illus.

Not for sale in Europe or the UK.


Samuel Bianchini

Samuel Bianchini, an artist and researcher, is Associate Professor at the École Nationale Supérieure des Arts Décoratifs (EnsAD), PSL Research University Paris where he is the head of the "Reflective Interaction" Research Group of EnsadLab, the school's laboratory.

Emanuele Quinz