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Artist Ollie Palmer on staging an 'ant ballet'

25 May 2012 Last updated at 01:19 BST

Artist and designer Ollie Palmer has developed technology that he hopes will allow him to stage an "ant ballet".

Working with scientist Dr Seirian Sumner and the Pestival project for insect art, he has developed synthetic pheromone that a particular species of ant follows - and a machine to control the way the hormone directs the ants.

The ant species he works with is too invasive to be brought to the UK, but he is able to demonstrate his method with a digital recreation of the ants' recorded laboratory movements.

He demonstrated his technology to BBC News while exhibiting his piece at the FutureEverybody art exhibition, part of Manchester's FutureEverything festival in May, celebrating technology.

Video produced by Dougal Shaw. Additional footage courtesy of Ollie Palmer