An archetype of associative relation

Interactive sound installation

Oak branches, conductive threads, wires, Arduino, speakers


This installation is a manifestation of nature, while in the form of an artificiality. It turns the whole space into a capacitive sensor, with conductive threads, wires and an Arduino broad. With the viewer wandering around the space, the subtlest encounter with the thin threads around the branches will trigger different sounds.

I am interested in exploring the boundary between sense and perception, which is inspired by Jakob von Uexküll’s biosemiotics theory about the Umwelt.  As Giorgio Agamben describes, regardless of the fact that the two perceptual worlds of the spider and the fly are absolutely uncommunicating, the web fabricated by a spider is precisely based on the visual deficiency of her prey. A fly would never see or know what captures her, while a spider would never see or know what she captures. (Of course, there is a certain way that a spider relates to a fly but there is nothing to do with “knowledge” as we know it.) The web represents our universe as infinite coincidences of this kind of reciprocal blindness, while each of them completes the circuit of the subject and its object. This makes me question the ways we connect to the world we are living in - sensing, feeling, or just knowing? 


The concept is to create an immersive environment for the viewers to experience the invisible connection between the subject and the matters. A connection to be discovered, to be activated, only through personal engagement. A connection which is actually fabricated by computing. This alludes to how our contemporary world is configured - the connections between human and nature is amplified and formulated by information processing devices and technologies, while at the same time, reduced into fragments of data. 



As part of the experiments, the webs are installed in the urban spaces, with the intention of attracting different animals/insects from the sites. I attempted to create a web as an archetype of associated relation. Within this artificial nature, a web does not function as it is in the natural nature. It would capture all kinds of encounters and mark the residue of the interaction.