Simon Heijdens wants to bring nature back into our lives in a very unconventional way.
Nature is becoming rare in our daily life. The consequence of the way our world is generally built being, that many people pass the largest part of the day in artificial, perpetual spaces where conditioned climates and 24 hour lighting cover the differences between day or night, spring or autumn.
His solution to this disappearance of nature in our lives is not to bring back more nature, but to recreate aspects of it that can fit within our artificial surroundings. Pictured above are his projects Tree, Branches and Lightweeds.
Ripples on a puddle of water, footsteps in the sand and slowly gathering grime. Natural processes are existent though becoming rare in our increasingly planned surrounding. While the trees on the streets are no longer nature but carefully controlled and managed, the wind that is moving its branches still is. An installation that traces and amplifies the leftovers of nature in the urban surrounding. White silhouettes of trees projected 8 meters high onto the facades of several buildings in a city. Its branches and leaves are moving either slightly or intense; directly to the measured wind that passes the facade of the building on which it is projected. Starting full of leaves at dawn, the tree looses one of its leaves each time someone passes it. When the leaf breaks of its branch, it drops down on the ground in an alley nearby. Because the leaves are made of light, they slowly brighten up the alley as they grow in amount over the course of the evening, and form a developping image that reveals the use of the city. The leaves roll out when someone walks through them.
A living digital organism growing on the ceiling of an indoor space, that rejoins the artificial, built world with an unplanned natural timeline. Branches is a site responsive software that generates a canopy of branches projected on the ceiling of a space. The branches grow, move and behave depending on external environmental conditions as choreographed by outdoor weather sensors, as well as on the use of the space. From the measurements gathered by movement sensors, the branches and leaves open to allow more light into the areas where there is a concentration of movement in the room. All technology of the installation is located in a specifically engineered ceramic canister, that can be placed anywhere in a room.
As natural elements like a lifting breeze, a sudden shower and a setting sun are planned out of our surrounding, the timeline of the every day is lost. A living digital organism growing onto an indoor space, through which the space regains the natural timeline that it has walled out. Uniquely generated plant families that grow up, move and behave closely depending on actual sunshine, rainfall and wind as measured live outside. On passing human traffic they bend, loose their seeds and pollenate to other walls throughout the space, to make up a constantly evolving wallpaper that reveals the character of the space and its use.