UNIVERSAL GARDEN

WORKS IN PROGRESS                                

                                                                                   UNIVERSAL GARDEN
                                                               The Botanical Algorithmic Living Collection

Our relationship to the natural world and its universal principles is revealed in this portrait of systems that create life. The mural sized painting of a botanical algorithmic garden is brought to life by the participation of people wearing the Parastichy Masks blending into and photographed as part of this mathematical landscape. The underlying principles that make up the beauty of plant forms shine light on the unity in the diverse phenomenon that surrounds us. Wearing the Parastichy Mask, laser cut with patterns of mathematical plant growth, this is a portrait not of individuals but of the universal garden we live in. For the past century, botanists have studied the emergence of plants, over time and space, by observing the nature of phyllotaxis and the mechanisms and geometry that govern plant growth patterns. Phyllotaxis is the spatial and temporal arrangement of leaves, petals or subunits around a stem or plant axis growing and expanding together into the shapes of succulents, trees, pine cones, pineapples, flowers. Parastichy is the invisible, hypothetical spiral line connecting a series of leaves on a stem that create an effect on the human eye. This unique botanical garden overlays organically drawn and mathematically generated computer models of plant growth algorithms mixing realism and abstraction. In a scientifically serious yet socially playful installation individuals become part of this botanical garden “living collection” portrait by holding the mask up to their face,  shielding themselves from the social recognition algorithms of our 21stcentury social media as they take their “botanical selfies”  becoming one with universal principles of nature.