Nina Tommasi: Biological Instrumentation




 
  • ©2008, Nina Tommasi, Biological Instrumentation
  • ©2008, Nina Tommasi, Biological Instrumentation
  • ©2008, Nina Tommasi, Biological Instrumentation

Artist(s):


Title:


Biological Instrumentation

Exhibition:


SIGGRAPH 2009: BioLogic: A Natural History of Digital Life

Creation Year:


2008

Category:


Installation

Artist Statement:


Biological Instrumentation is a time-based spatial installation that combines organic and computational processes. The viewer is confronted with a hanging garden of mimosa plants, each connected by a series of tubes to an air compressor. The plants are wired with audio speakers, light sensors, and other electronic equipment. Digital stimulation, produced from the algorithmic application of compressed air onto the leaves, forces the plant to contract. Over the next 15 minutes, following the blowing of the compressed air, the mimosa plants begin to open their leaves again, triggering sound signals to play from the audio speakers that “float” next to the plants. The generated sound signals gradually increase in volume and intensity, culminating with the forced air being released onto the plants again. This work explores the poetics involved in creating new relationships between machines and plant life. The installation invites the viewer to walk through a spatialized sound environment and observe the machine-plant interaction. Regardless of the plant’s condition, the machines’ algorithmic program constantly stimulates the mimosa.