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Artificial Nature

How does artificial-life art adapt to its environment? What is the significance of a computational ecosystem proposed as contemporary art? These are some of the ideas examined in this bio-inspired immersive art installation.

The computational world of Artificial Nature consists of organisms interacting within an environment, consuming flowing energy and matter to grow and survive, generating continuous patterns of emergent beauty. Spectators can explore this world freely and endlessly, and influence it indirectly just as they might play in a stream or forest. Sensory data collected through a camera-eye and microphone-ear, and sometimes tactile touch, become the environmental conditions to which organisms must adapt.

Artificial Nature is an infinite game. It invites you to play and create, as continuation rather than toward a termination. It actively fuses intuition, artistic expression, and personal awakening with knowledge of complex systems, thermodynamics, physical biology, and computer science. In this way, art, research, and play are integrated into one aesthetic and creative experience of infinite depth, inspiring the growth of the artwork, the spectators, and the artists in a symbiotic circle.

Artificial Nature is proposed as ‘art-as-it-could-be’, suggesting the future-possible of art through its unconventional expansion. This is a vital role of contemporary art: to conceive and create the open ended world in which we are about to live. The Artificial Nature ecosystem draws upon artificial life and systems theory models of evolution, metabolism and dissipative structures, embodied within a real-time computational assemblage of physics and fluid simulation, evolutionary algorithm and agent-based modeling.

The immersion of the user as one component within the holistic ecosystem is essential to our design; this is carried out through projection and spatialization emphasizing presence, and both voluntary and involuntary interaction. The virtual world is infinitely explorable in any direction, and movements and sounds made by the user influence the shared environment of human and artificial organisms.

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