This virtual environment is populated by plants that echo the Earth’s flora from hundreds of millions of years ago, specifically, the plants of the Carboniferous period that now constitute coal fields. As is widely recognised, our age, aptly named “capitalocene” by Donna Haraway, is detrimental to the environment and health of all living organisms. Use of fossil fuels has been repeatedly proven detrimental to the Earth as a whole, yet hope persists that if we completely end our use of fossil fuels, we might reverse some of the effects of global warming and try to restore some of the damage we created over the last two centuries of industrial progress. Although declining, coal is still widely used in industry, not only for direct energy production but also for numerous industrial applications and derivatives; it remains a significant source of carbon dioxide emissions in the atmosphere. Carboflora environment is connected to tracking the quantities of harmful particles in the atmosphere. Its levels are reflected in the way plants inhabit the virtual system. Properties of virtual plants are connected to a database that tracks air quality in almost real time. More than 10,000 stations throughout the world constantly send data about various pollutants like PM2.5, PM10 (small and big particulate matter), O3 (Ozone), NO2 (Nitrogen dioxide), SO2 (Sulphur dioxide) and CO (Carbon monoxide), as well as the AQI (air quality index). Upon opening, the application chooses the closest physical location and maintains the various properties of plants according to the numbers being sent from the database. Plants as a sort of timeless ur-forms echo the past and possible future within which we might curb our polluting emissions.
Production: Ultramono and SciArtLab, Department of Knowledge Technologies, Institute Jozef Stefan, 2019 / Ultramono in SciArtLab, Odsek za tehnologije znanja, Institut Jožef Stefan, 2019.
3D objects, generative modelling: Tanja Vujinovic
Unity3D programming: Tanja Vujinovic, Gaja Boc, Sara Bertoncelj Čadež
3D objects of carboniferous plants: Dariusz Andrulonis for edukator.pl
Consulting: Dr. Vid Podpečan, Department of Knowledge Technologies, Institute Jozef Stefan; Jan Kušej