Chrysalis – Memories of the world from before you had eyes – 2014-2016

The Chrysalis is conceived as a “living” organism in the process of metamorphosis from the digital to physical realms. The geometric form was inspired by the shape of the Monarch butterfly during its metamorphosis from larvae to winged adult. During the day the Chrysalis has a simple white appearance and almost blends in with its surroundings. At night the internal process of metamorphosis is made visible by a pattern of lights that cycle from green to the colours of a fully developed Monarch butterfly. The structure of the Chrysalis is also inspired by the process of urban renovation (where existing buildings are wrapped in plastic and then internally transformed) and the nomadic tents of the urban homeless. The Chrysalis has no permanent home for installation but its physical lightness allows it to move from location to location, even uninvited. The Chrysalis has been called a ghost and can act as a reminder or memory of other organisms (e.g. people) that have passed through the space it inhabits. As a source of light in the darkness it can become a temporary gathering place, until it too moves on. The Chrysalis sculpture was designed by hand as a digital model and then converted into a printed physical object using the Polygon Construction Kit. The Chrysalis embodies the metamorphosis of digital structures into physical form.

Image courtesy LEHRTER SIEBZEHN

Design Process

The shape of the Monarch butterfly chrysalis was sketched by hand, first on paper, then inside Google SketchUp. The digital model was converted to a physical object by using the Polygon Construction Kit. The colours for the “metamorphosis” animation were taken from photographs of a real chrysalis and emerged butterfly.

Exhibitions / Press

Movements on the Periphery, 48 Stunden Neukölln, Berlin, Germany, 2017 (blog post)

Site-specific installation, SPEKTRUM, Berlin, Germany, 2015-2017 (blog post)

Sensient Geometries, Group exhibition, SPEKTRUM, Berlin, Germany, 2015 (pdf, blog post)

Michael Ang: light and change“, Interview with Imperica, 2015

unrender #2, LEHRTER SIEBZEHN, Berlin, Germany, 2014

Waldkultum Festival, Fort Gorgast, Germany, 2014

Pop-up residency, Situation Lab, OCAD University, Toronto, Canada, 2014