Robotic Plants
Flashy Glasses
Olympic Torch
Hero's Engine
Curvy Bookcase
Terra Preta
Robotic Plants
I like the efficiency of living things. In life, almost every structure has several functions. A person's bones provide a rigid framework to allow motion, but also protect sensitive structures and produce blood cells. Skin provides thermal regulation, durable protection,and sensory input.

Electronics usually don't work like that. Usually a wire is just there to provide a current path, a capacitor just provides capacitance, and so on. Everything is hidden in a plain enclosure with no function but protection. Sometimes the mechanical components are also aesthetically pleasing, but even that plurality of function is uncommon.

My plant sculptures are designed in imitation of life. They get energy from sunlight during the day, and store it in tuber-like batteries. When the light isn't bright enough to charge the batteries, they wake up and begin to pulse the LED "fruit".

In a living thing everything has a metabolic function. In these "robotic plants" everything has an electrical function, as well as a structural function, an aesthetic function, or both.

In the white tree, the thick white wires in the core of the trunk, branches, and roots connect components of the circuit and provide stiffness. Much thinner wires, also carrying current, bind the thick wires together to keep the form of the trunk and branches. The leaves are made of solar panels, the berries are LEDs, the tubers are batteries, and the symbiotic insects nibbling on the roots are built from components that cause the lights to pulse rather than just lighting up.

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