Collaborator: CreaTures: Creative Practices for Transformational Futures
Production, visual identity, and digital design for the Cyan Automaton, a multidisciplinary project on bacterial, terrestrial, and interplanetary colonization.
The Cyano Automaton is a bioreactor equipped with Artificial Intelligence. It cultivates spirulina and gives voice to this species to narrate a story about exploitation, space exploration, and colonialism.
Cyanobacteria stand behind toxic “blue-green algae” blooms, superfood sensation “spirulina”, and a potential source of nutrients for the first colonizers of Mars.
Led by Aga Pokrywka, the Super Eclectic team developed an interactive vessel that monitors the growing cyanobacteria’s condition. It is programmed to combine this information with data from NASA’s budgets, global gold mining, and the production of carbon dioxide.
The Cyano Automaton communicates by tweeting out compelling insights that shed a light on how these statistics are related to exploitation and colonialism; whether here on Earth, or in outer space.
The interactive bioreactor, visual identity, and the digital design of the entire project was developed by Super Eclectic.
Super Eclectic’s website’s design takes its inspiration from flight simulator cockpits and science fiction imagery.
The website displays , in an intrepid style and with scientific accuracy, graphs and numbers of the reactor’s temperature, turbidity, and air pump.
It also provides visualizations that compare NASA’s space exploration budget per year; annual gold mining in terms of tons and profit, as well as the production of CO2 linked to these activities.
A livestream of the reactor, sleek blue prints of its design, and an extensive description of the project are also part of the digital platform.
The Cyano Automaton had its star debut during Uroboros 2021: Designing in Troubling Times. This annual festival of experimental design & research explores what and how we can design in current times of socio-ecological crises to support positive change.
The participation in this event took place through a partnership with CreaTures, a multidisciplinary project organized by Aalto University.
Cyanobacteria are a multifaceted little bunch. Not only are they are the first photosynthetic organisms ever, they’re also responsible for the evolution of all life forms on this planet.
The Cyano Automaton is a multimedia project that helps us realize that there must be a systemic change to reverse the damage caused by human activities.