Ornamental Bug Garden 002
Place of Publication: Southampton, UK
OBG002 is part of a series of wall hanging digital self-contained systems. This series of works combines gaming techniques and artificial life modelling to explore relationships between scientific modelling techniques and ornamental gardens. In a garden, elements are composed and managed in a way that tries to be natural whilst often combining formal sculptural elements to create a place of tranquillity and relaxation. In artificial life modelling the purpose is normally to understand or predict how a natural system may behave in certain circumstances. Here we attempt to combine the two approaches by building a population of modelled life forms into a formally arranged space with a compositional and aesthetic agenda.
The individual elements of OBG002 have been generated algorithmically using software created by us, before being carefully composed in their final form. In building the garden we become the designers of closed ecosystems. In addition to considering the shape colour and form of the elements used within the garden we must consider their effect on the overall ecology of the system. For example certain behavioural characteristics or population numbers could cause the systems to reach a state of entropic stagnation. The complexities of the overall sound composition are the result of emergence within the systems. As OBG002’s colonies of objects catapult around a garden containing bubble pumping lifts and algorithmically composed plant life. Collisions with its elements trigger sounds and compose an incidental sound piece.
Although OBG002 uses modelling techniques similar to those used by scientists, instead of aiming to understand something existing, we hope to build something new of intrigue and beauty. OBG002 is a biosphere; a close system like the earth taking only energy as its input other than that nothing enters or leaves. As such there is no human interaction with the system. The work is built using computer technology to execute the rules that cause the system to behave in its unique way and not in order to make it respond in any form to any external forces.