Category : STUDENT
By Y2K (Taipei)
“Cybernation” is an installation that controls plant growth. By using both phototropism and apogeotropism, plants can be shaped by human. At first, a path is drawn in a 3d software to represent the expected plant growth. Then the model is imported into the control program of the installation. Through a series of calculation, the motor connected to the plant is activated to spin at different angles, controlling the direction of sunlight and gravity. Eventually the plant grows into the shape as designed. With calculation, the unpredictable life can be controlled, and the plant can be shaped.
We attempt to use new media to talk about the relationship between human and plants. Human have been interfering with eco development since the beginning of history, yet is this really the right thing to do? Based on this question, we try to create an installation that controls plant growth. By calculating the unpredictable signs of life, we trigger thinking about the relationship between human and nature.
We first aimed at creating a sample data base. Finally, we chose a pea plant variety, the Taichung 15, as the subject for its excellent characteristics. Taichung 15 is a kind of vine, with a thick seedling stem, resistant to powdery mildew and drought. In a fully-controlled environment, the plant is exposed to full red light of 610~720nm wavelength to induce excessive growth (stem growth, not leaf growth). Data of the plant’s growth, such as the growth speed, swinging width and growth zone is recorded. At first, a path is drawn in a 3d software to represent the expected plant growth. Then, the model is imported into the control program of the installation. Through a series of calculations, the motor connected to the plant is activated to spin at different angles, controlling the direction of sunlight and gravity. Eventually the plant grows into the shape as designed.
Technic: Biotechnology (nutrition control, environmental control), auto control, laser cutting, ironwork, woodwork, digital programming and mechanical structureMaterial: copper, aluminum, wood, electronic components, light bulb, polyacrylate, soilless medium, nutrient and pea plant.
50 x 50 x 80 cm.
Hu Youyang (胡悠揚）
Artistic and Managing Director of
“Biosignal_Cybernation” is a thoughtful piece about material, machine and nature at the same time. A highly aesthetic creation of an apparatus that turns growing plants into material being shaped by the specifically designed apparatus. By extending our common understanding of building versus growing, this work is also an important contribution to the future developments of digital fabrication.
The aesthetic appeal of this installation makes it even more challenging to reflect about the objectisation of nature and living beings that we take as a granted right of human beings, all too often without considering the harmful impact of our actions onto the ecosphere of our planet.
If we ever will have conscious AI and robots will this be their way of bonsai?