PlantConnect by Carlos Castellanos, Bello Bello

  • ©, , PlantConnect



Artist(s) and People Involved:

    Artist(s) In Residence:



Artist Statement:

    PlantConnect is a human-plant interaction system that combines the electrophysiological and photosynthetic activities of plants, the breathing of human interlocutors and the analytical abilities of intelligent computational systems to connect plant and human on a perceptual and physiological level. Part of larger investigations into alternative models for the creation of shared experiences and understanding with the natural world, the project explores complexity and emergent phenomena by harnessing the material agency of non-human organisms and the capacity of emerging technologies as mediums for information transmission, communication and interconnectedness between the human and non-human. The system measures the photosynthetic and bioelectrical activity from an array of plant microbial fuel cells (P-MFCs) and translates them into light and sound patterns using machine learning. Bioelectricity, light, sound, CO2, photosynthesis and computational intelligence form a circuit that enhances informational linkages between human, plant, bacteria and the physical environment, enabling a mode of interaction that is experienced not just as a technologically-enabled act of translation but as an embodied flow of information. In doing so, PlantConnect affords a novel experience of otherness, a heightened experience of otherwise mundane, unseen — but nevertheless vital — interdependent biological processes.