Mengyu Chen, Anshul Pendse
2nd floor, room 2005
Eccentric Nature is a multisensory immersive art installation that challenges our anthropocentric perception of reality by considering the viewpoints of networked entities such as micro-organisms, forests, marine life, cities, and artificial neural networks. Mediating and interpolating between the visions of different entities, Eccentric Nature searches for an alternative to the singular human perspective rooted in the Anthropocene.
This project starts with the exploration of two key terms: eccentricity and nature. Eccentricity describes a state of movement off from the central axis, and implies the tilted, imperfect, and sometimes turbulent geo-political climate that is constantly drawing unpredictable boundaries in our life. It's broken form, "eccentri-city," denotes a collective state of being eccentric in the public domain, a culture that is deviating from the centripetal governing force.
Nature, on the other hand, provides a systemic and ecological perspective, questioning and examining the intra-activity among different biological species, artificial objects, emergent machines and humans. For the sake of better symbiosis, instead of leveraging and exploiting nature with power, we link ourselves with the entities beyond our perception, converse and empathize with them in a new sensational network.
Eccentric Nature, therefore, is about the creation of a state of being networked with other non-human entities. We create multi-level and multisensory immersive VR worlds to turn our audience into part of the emergent network. We use genetic algorithms and reinforcement learning to simulate behaviours of various artificial and biological species, such as microorganisms, forests, and AIs. The virtual worlds we are building blend and interpolate between each other, moving and shifting from one modality to another, and creating multisensory experiences.