Robot strippers were one particularly striking ‘highlight’ of CES this week

CES attendees may have got a little more than they bargained for if they stumbled down to the Sapphire Gentleman’s Club, the world’s largest strip club, to unwind after a tiresome day trekking around the show floor.

That’s because British artist Giles Walker took over the Sapphire this week, bringing robo-strippers to the stage to grind and gyrate alongside the club’s real-life pole dancers.

The robo-strippers weren’t designed to replace traditional strippers, however. Far from it, in fact. They were part of a wider installation, intended to showcase how machines are often ill used for surveillance and voyeurism, according to Walker.

Related: CES 2018 highlights

Walker also said he worried about the development of ‘sex robots’, telling Recode:

“My worry is — and this is really crude, but it is a crude idea — if you build a robot that you can have sex with, then you can build a robot that you can rape, and you can build a child robot that you can have sex with, and it’s all supposedly legal. But [just] because it’s legal, does that mean it’s a healthy thing? The dark side of the sex industry will create some really nasty, nasty stuff, and I think, ‘Is it worth it?’”

It doesn’t look like the club’s (human) dancers are worried about their mechanical competition, though.

“There are a lot of people with weird fetishes, so I am sure somebody will get turned on by them,” one of the club’s performers revealed to AFP (via Phys.org). “But nobody can beat the beauty of someone, and our talent with our brains, the way we talk.”

“We can make people feel better than them.”

A strange side attraction at an otherwise not-so-strange trade show? Or the ultimate encapsulation of the ongoing row about CES, the tech industry, and sexism? You decide.

Would you like to see the robo-strippers in a strip club near you? Let us know on Twitter @TrustedReviews.