< hear the grass growing >

to hear the grass growing
to hear the grass growing
to hear the grass growing
installation, 2008

in cooperation with
Clemens Winkler

The continual process of growth is something which generally escapes our ordinary senses. It is something which can be recognised only over an extended period of time. If a person takes care of a plant, they recognise growth over a period of days or weeks, this application transfers the growth of the plant into a medium which we are always able to interpret, that of an ever changing soundscape.

Through the installation, the growth of the grass generates different electrical pulses similar to heartbeats. The more advanced the growth of the plant, the slower and stronger the pulse develops.

The application consists of three physical layers, the top layer is the growing grass and beneath it the root system, below these is the technology which measures the growth and generates the sound. Over time, and with care and attention, the roots grow more and more, creating a complex root-system. A microcontroller is able to measure the conductivity of the root system, the growing media and the solutions of nutrients which surround them and when coupled with an amplifier, generates clicks and pulses in different frequencies. Care, light, nutrients and water, as well as the sequence of connectivity between the growing elements of the grass are thus responsible for creating the ever changing and growing soundscape.

This prototype tries to compare nature and technology to point out parallels. It allows us to pay attention to things which would seem unimportant or unperceivable to us without such a device.

Fritzing Creator Kit