Rodot Push/Pull

We have built an interactive A-life sculpture:

  • a ring of four speakers surrounds the circular form of the sculpture itself
  • an overhead camera tracks the movement of people around the sculpture
  • the expression (behaviour) of the artwork depends on the behaviours and choices of those engaged with it
  • the agents are represented as clusters of light visible through fibre optic cables that transmit from custom LED printed circuit boards
  • the observer becomes an interactant, and the interactant becomes a co-creator: the process of engaging with the installation results in a co-construction of the artwork (and of the artwork's meaning)
  • the experience of the work is different for each participant, and many facets of the work are not immediately available, but appear during the time spent with it.

Push/Pull from Nell Tenhaaf on Vimeo.

Push/Pull interaction detail from Nell Tenhaaf on Vimeo.

You're looking at the edge of one of the four curved panels of Push/Pull. Moving towards the face of the panel launches the interaction, and the red light becomes your agent. Getting your agent close to the two yellow agents lets you "greet" them and call out a bigger population of agents.

Two sequences are shown here, with cellular automata ending each. The first time through, the red agent keeps passing its shape to the yellow ones. In the second round, yellows greet first and consequently pass their shapes to red. You can play a game with the system by trying to keep your red shape and pass it on.