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The last few decades have been characterized by a very strong development of machines that restore or extend human capabilities. Now these machines have an unprecedented ability to respond to external stimuli. Their interaction with humans is so intimate that it can be better defined as a partnership instead of a relationship between an individual and an instrument. This exhibition presents current biorobotics research and its extraordinary achievements as well as significant historical documents. It also shows the parallel paths of science and the collective imagination, from ancient mythology until today’s science fiction. Without claiming to be exhaustive, the Nexus exhibition aims at being a starting point to go deeper into this subject and to think about the critical ethical and political questions that arise from the use of biorobotics technology.


Palazzo Medici Riccardi
via Cavour 3, Florence
23 January - 15 March 2016


Exhibition hours

Monday-Tuesday, Thursday-Sunday 9:30-19:00; closed on Wednesdays

Admission fee

Full fee € 7,00
Reduced fee (6-12 years old) € 4,00
Groups (15 person min.) € 4,00
0-6 years old free entry


The Nexus exhibition ticket gives also access to the permanent exhibition of Palazzo Medici Riccardi.

Educational activities

Free educational laboratories organized by GREAT Robotics are available for school groups and visitors. Italian only.
Program and info


The series of conference is a satellite event held in partnership with Associazione culturale Caffè-Scienza Firenze and Consiglio Regionale della Toscana. Italian only.
Program and info

Information and reservations

+39 055 265311 (Monday to Friday 9:30-17:00)


Educational activities

Educational and entertaining laboratories are available for school groups and visitors, in Italian only. Robotics labs are organized by GREAT Robotics, a multidisciplinary team of young researchers from the BioRobotics Institute of Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna experienced in automation, psychology, philosophy, and theatre.
Laboratories aim at getting the youth – but not only them – used to robotics, regarding both technological aspects – hardware (sensors, actuators, etc.) and software (programming, data transmission, etc.) – and ethical and social implications deriving from robotics research and use.

There is no need of any technological knowledge to attend the laboratories.


Laboratories for school groups (in Italian)

Weekend activities for all visitors (in Italian)



Series of conferences

The series of conferences is organized in partnership with Associazione culturale Caffè-Scienza Firenze and Consiglio Regionale della Toscana. The conferences are held in Italian.

Free admission until all seats are taken.

Salone delle Feste, Palazzo Bastogi, Via Cavour 18.

+39 055 265311 (lunedì-venerdì 9.30-17.00)

The lectures are streaming broadcasted on Youtube



Thursday, January 28th, h. 17:00
Storia degli automi dall'antichità all'Ottocento
Giovanni Di Pasquale (Museo Galileo)

Thursday, February 4th, h. 17:00
CaffèScienza: Sistemi bionici: rischi e opportunità
Silvestro Micera (Istituto di BioRobotica-Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna)
Modera: Giovanni La Penna (Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche e Associazione culturale Caffè-Scienza)

Thursday, February 11th, h. 17:00
Biorobotica e bionica: grandi sfide scientifiche, tecnologiche e sociali
Paolo Dario (Istituto di BioRobotica-Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna)

Thursday, February 18th, h. 17:00
CaffèScienza: La robotica e lo sviluppo tecnologico responsabile
Guglielmo Tamburrini (Università di Napoli Federico II)
Modera: Francesco Grasso (Università degli Studi di Firenze e Associazione culturale Caffè-Scienza)

Thursday, February 25th, h. 17:00
Robot ed estetica della comunicazione
Mario Costa (Università di Salerno)

Thursday, March 3rd, h. 17:00
Il sesso dei robot nell'immaginario
Riccardo Putti (Università di Siena)

Thursday 10 marzo, h. 17:00
Ipotesi sul cyborg: figurazioni, macchine, mondi
Elena Bougleux (Università di Bergamo)


Exhibition organized by

Under the patronage of

  • Città Metropolitana di Firenze
  • Regione Toscana
  • Comune di Firenze


  • Alberto Mazzoni, Riccardo Putti

Scientific committee

  • Alberto Mazzoni, Silvestro Micera, Pericle Salvini, Peppino Tropea (Istituto di BioRobotica, Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna)
  • Riccardo Putti (Università di Siena)
  • Francesco Bogani (CREA–Centro Ricerche EtnoAntropologiche)
  • Mattia Della Rocca (Università di Pisa)


  • Biblioteca Comunale "R. Fucini", Empoli
  • Istituto di BioRobotica, Scuola Superiore Sant'Anna, Pontedera (Pisa)
  • Museo Stibbert, Firenze


  • Civita–Opera Laboratori Fiorentini
  • Dreoni
  • Spin Master Italy


  • Museo Galileo: Laura Manetti, Elena Montali


  • Francesco Bogani


  • Alessio Ghionzoli

Graphic design

  • Museo Galileo: Monica Tassi


  • Museo Galileo–Unità Web: Iolanda Rolfo, Roberta Massaini, Leonardo Curioni, Elena Fani

Image acquisition

  • Museo Galileo: Sabina Bernacchini, Susanna Cimmino

Educational activities

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