why studio swine built a 'breathing' mega-sculpture for one of the world’s smallest organisms
 

why studio swine built a 'breathing' mega-sculpture for one of the world’s smallest organisms

it may surprise you to learn that this nearly 9-meter-tall, 20 tonne mega-sculpture is inspired by one of the world’s smallest living beings — even though the transformation of natural environment to art is no unfamiliar theme to studio swine. at the helm of the practice, japanese architect azusa murakami and british artist alexander groves find themselves ever-interested in the elements of the natural world, and discovering ways to integrate topics such as geology and ocean awareness into their creative work.

 

it is fitting, then, that the duo create a project housed inside a massive global garden with the largest indoor rainforest and more than 3,000 plant varieties — the grimshaw-designed eden project in cornwall, england. studio swine’s recent project ‘infinity blue’ now lives here.

studio swine infinity blue

 

 

studio swine derived the influences for ‘infinity blue’ from cyanobacteria, one of the world’s smallest and most important organisms. around 3 billion years ago, cyanobacteria first developed the ability to produce oxygen, thus changing the face of our planet. cyanobacteria were the first to perform oxygenic photosynthesis and produce oxygen. today, their descendants — chloroplasts — reside inside every living green plant, capturing sunlight and combining it with water and carbon dioxide to make an energy source: sugar and building blocks that make flowers, trees, crops and eventually all animals. their only waste product? oxygen.

studio swine infinity blue

 

 

the artist duo wanted to build a monument to these vital organisms in the same way that notable figures from history are commemorated with statues. taking the form of a stromatolite — a massive stack of fossilized cyanobacteria — the installation is comprised of ceramic tiles made from cornish clay that reflect the mining history of the area. its organic, textural façade is generated by a reaction-diffusion algorithm found in nature, and features cyan dots that represent the cyanobacteria. from the sculpture, 32 vortex cannons produce vapor rings that symbolize oxygen, and whose scents tell a layered history of the earth’s atmosphere. studio swine collaborated with paris perfume house givaudan to develop fragrances inspired by the aromas of primordial worlds.

studio swine infinity blue

 

 

‘infinity blue’ forms part of ‘invisible worlds’, a major permanent exhibition at the eden project that reveals the world beyond our senses. a signature component of a studio swine project is an accompanying film, which — for this work — has been co-directed by the studio and filmmaker petr krejčí. the film focuses on murakami and groves’s research in the sea close to the cornish coast.

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

studio swine infinity blue

  • I was blown away watching the video and so thankful to these amazing artists for bringing these unsung heroes to our consciousness. I would love to see this sculpture.

    Karen von Ahlefeldt
  • Stunningly beautiful.
    Thank you

    Ron Smith

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