North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences

Art and Science Collide. “Patterned by Nature”.

Commissioned by the North Carolina Museum of Natural Sciences for their newly built research center, Patterned by Nature is a 10 foot wide by 90 foot long ribbon that winds through the five story atrium of the building. The sculpture celebrates the abstraction of nature’s infinite complexity into patterns through the scientific process.

Running on a low 75 watts of power, Patterned by Nature is made of 3600 tiles of LCD glass that animate light in patterns across scales of space and time. Animations are created by independently varying the transparency of each piece of glass.

The video below is a wonderful showcase to the piece, which I’m sure looks even more amazing in person.

“The content cycles through twenty programs, ranging from clouds to rain drops to colonies of bacteria to flocking birds to geese to cuttlefish skin to pulsating black holes. The animations were created through a combination of algorithmic software modeling of natural phenomena and compositing of actual footage.

An eight channel soundtrack accompanies the animations on the ribbon, giving visitors clues to the identity of the pixelated movements. In addition, two screens show high resolution imagery and text revealing the content on the ribbon at any moment.”