BIOMODD IMPRESSIONS

posted May 18, 2009, 1:53 AM by Diego S. Maranan   [ updated May 31, 2009, 6:03 AM ]
posted by Melanie Trani on May 6, 2009



“Ecology + Game Culture + Installation Art + Community. We are looking for part
icipants! No previous experience or training needed. Check out www.biomodd.net for more information.”
Woo…what a come on!
In true college style as I hurriedly packed and arranged stuff en route to Manila and Los Baños for MMS 198 & Biomodd, I contemplated on what to expect when just few days ago
our professor, Diego briefly summarized to me what this summer program was all about.
Surely, I had my readings on our class Google sites, Biomodd sites and links. But to feel, see and touch the Biomodd creations opened my sensorial being to fully grasp the concept
behind Biomodd. This proved to be a challenge however, with my minimal background in interior design and acquired snippets of shallow geek stuff like making your own online
games, using social websites and googling search engines online. Unperturbed by my expectations, I was eager to see the Biomodd team and project for myself.
As we listened through the seminar on Art and Social Change, Diego asked us “What is Art?” I had the simple concept of photography in mind. In photography, you just don’t take
pictures, you make them. And to fully grasp the meaning of art, let us explore what-is-not-art and know that the artist is akin to a creator. In Biomodd, collective creativity runs
the show. This collaborative group is radical with free flowing fusions on art, technology, ecology, gaming, installation and community development relying on collective creativity
and yet there are restrictions. “Restrictions liberates us “ according to Diego. It starts with the group of artists aka creators bonded together as a team. Unknowingly, the first
restriction has just been imposed: to be a participant- you have to think creatively. Experience and talent may have its weight but thinking creatively can greatly benefit the
eclectic vision of Biomodd. And second, restrictions of both living and non-living components like computer parts, materials, plants and fishes have their own limitations when
symbiotically crafted together.
Living organisms which are part of this project may have to adjust to its new artificial set-up in conduit to computer parts. And as an art installation let me quote this from the
Facebook Biomodd site:
"Biomodd [LBA2] is a site-specific living sculpture that integrates recycled computer components, plant life, and collaborative creativity. The previous version built at the
Aesthetic Technologies Lab in Ohio, Biomodd [ATH1], was a monumental, partially-transparent sculptural case that contains a computer network living together with an ecosystem
of different plant species. The heat that was generated by the electronics was used by the plants to grow and develop. This setup was used as a system for a multiplayer computer
game; visitors were invited to sit down and use the art work to play and communicate with other visitors."
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