Posted by on Nov 24, 2014 in | 0 comments

This project offers a poetic, interactive experience of a mixed reality landscape, a virtual ecosystem of hills and valleys that is populated by artificial organisms with foraging, scavenging, predatory and social behaviors. The ecosystem is projected from above onto 3 tons of sand that is formed into separate islands. Archipelago is a quintessential ALife world of bottom-up adaptive behaviours and evolution that diverges in the niche conditions created by the islands. The artists have built in a feature to directly engage viewers, by making their creatures vulnerable to extinction by the shadows that people cast when walking through the installation, while at the same time this refertilizes the landscape in the form of a fungal cellular automaton that crawls across it. The project is a sophisticated generative art experience that is also an aesthetic delight.

About the authors

Artificial Nature is the artistic partnership of Haru Ji and Graham Wakefield, exploring the subject of life in art through “artificial natures”: a form of computational generative art creating artificial life ecosystems as mixed reality environments. It is an interdisciplinary art form linking the generative open-endedness of both biology and computation within an aesthetic experience of continuation rather than closure. Since 2008, over thirty-five Artificial Natures have been exhibited across ten countries, including festivals and conferences such as ISEA, EvoWorkshops, and SIGGRAPH, and venues such as La Gaîté Lyrique, Paris; ProtoSpace, TU Delft, Holland; Seoul City Hall, Korea; City Hall, Hong Kong; Seoul Olympic Museum of Art, Korea; CAFA Art Museum, Beijing, China; The AlloSphere, USA.

Haru Ji is a TransArtist and researcher exploring the subject of life in art through Artificial Life Worldmaking: a form of computational generative art creating and evolving virtual ecosystems as immersive environments. She holds a Ph.D. in Media Arts and Technology at the University of California Santa Barbara and is an assistant professor of Art & Technology in the School of Consilience at Sogang University in Seoul, Korea.

Graham Wakefield’s research has evolved from computer music composition to the generation of open-ended environments for exploratory experience, emphasizing continuation over closure. This work is expressed through software design for creative coding, and immersive artworks of artificial ecosystems (both leveraging live system evolution through dynamic compilation). Currently a Visiting Professor in the Graduate School of Culture Technology at KAIST, South Korea, he holds a BA in Philosophy from the University of Warwick UK, a Master in Composition from Goldsmiths College University of London, UK and a Ph.D in Media Arts and Technology from the University of California Santa Barbara, USA.