Terranium light

2012, school project, Carmen Rebolledo

Terranium Light is an experimental project about how the living can be represented and recreated through digital media. In a way, this is the electronic version of a plant, that evolves and behaves depending on user feedback and user care.

The idea

Since nature and the relationship between man and nature are some of my main concerns, I sought to work on representing the frailty of organisms that we usually take for granted but that are of extreme importance in our ecosystems : mould, coral and lichen.
Coral protects fish and humans alike, by creating riffs and allowing complexe ecosystems around them. Mould is not just the sign of rot, it decomposes organic components and reintroduces them into the food chain. As for Lichen, capable of living in the harshest of environments, it is capable of transforming rocks into fertile soil, allowing smaller plants to start growing.

This projects is a sort of garden, where different types of cristal-like pieces, representing mould, coral or lichen, can be “planted” onto the surface. Once the planted object has been able to “grow”, it turns green and eventually red, signifying that another piece will be able to “grow” if placed next to the first.

The garden feeds on user presence, movement and sound, meaning that if it is left alone too long, less and less pieces will be lit, until the colony eventually “dies”. If the plant is well fed by the presence of the user, it will offer a series of colourful animations depending on the weather and the season outside the house.

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