Installation that celebrates our symbiotic connections to microbial life, living in and on us, the material nature of that life, and new forms of algorithmic life forming.
The Scatter Surge 2019 by Ken Rinaldo is an installation that celebrates our symbiotic connections to microbial life, living in and on us, the material nature of that life, and new forms of algorithmic life forming.
The video documenting this work describes an installation where infrared triggered microprocessors switch whisper fans on, to propel mobiles forward and collect your skin microbiota.
The mobiles are constructed with branches and stones supporting microbe-collection-units. As the collection units’ spin, fans suck your human skin microflora through white filter paper placed on Plexiglas masks cut in the shape of pluripotent stem cells.
I am intrigued that these skin cells can be turned into embryonic stem cells, and then turned into any other cell type, such as heart, lung, brain, or eye.
During the run of this installation, the microbe samples collected on the filter paper were grown in liquid agar, as holobiome-snapshots, and became part of this installation.
We think of self as an individual, though WE are a multispecies community with trillions of human cells symbiotically joining with trillions of bacterial, fungal, and viral cells.
Together WE with water, light, stone, minerals, air, and atmosphere have come to form a holobiont. A holobiont is a complex and dynamic ecosystem composed of hologenomes. The host genome (us), and other associated microbial genomes intertwining determines the future of this ecosystem.
This installation consists of collection units (fans in Plexiglas boxes with filters) that collect human skin cells, bacteria, fungi, and viruses riding with you. As you enter the gallery, infrared sensors hooked to microprocessors, switch the collection units on, and filter the air. The cell samples collected on these filters will be grown in sealed Petri dishes, as holobiome-snapshots, collected in a present earth-time. Computers and algorithmic logic have given rise to artificial intelligence, and AI now plays a significant role in the nature of how we identify, categorize, visualize, and form the world. AI has become a fundamental part of our evolution as a species.