Ryan Wolfe: Branching System and Study for Lit from Within
Two of the current installations at Brooklyn's Dam, Stuhltrager gallery come from Seattle-based multi-media artist Ryan Wolfe. Self-described as a "device artist and interaction designer," Wolfe offers technological studies of organic materials that force viewers to reimagine their perception of plants.
"Branching System" is based in the theories of Edward Lorenz, who created the "butterfly effect" concept of Chaos Theory (and who died one week before the show opened). The installation covers the gallery walls with robotic leaves that independently flutter like mechanical butterflies (pictured above). Viewers presence is reflected in the leaves' motion, creating a fully interactive experience.
Also showing is Wolfe's "Study for Lit from Within," (pictured at right) which pairs living plants with LED lights in a dark room. The lights are surgically embedded into the actual plants and operate on a programmed schedule of sunrise and sunset. Each plant's "internal sunshine" allows for photosynthesis, thus keeping it alive while creating a striking, futuristic display. Both exhibitions—as well as a pair of video installations from Russian artist Anna Frants—have been extended for another month until 29 June 2008.