Thesis Archive

Erstellt: 30. September 2021

NOTHING EXISTS INDEPENDENTLY – how trees communicate

The project is a responsive intervention and webAR experience for public urban spaces. It is an urban landmark that creates a meeting ground and relaxation zone for urbanites and passers-by, while raising awareness about the interconnection of trees and the importance of this to us. Using analogue and digital technology to make the connection and communication between trees perceivable, it allows the audience in greenery-free spaces to reconnect with the cradle of the ecosystem earth. The installation is first of all a multi-sensory urban experience and placemaking project. But it also is a call to discuss how we treat our forests, as we need to consider the complexity we live in - socially and ecologically.

The project is a proposal for the MediaArchitecture Biennale 2020 #FuturesImplied and is nominated for a student award in the category "More-Than-Human Cities".

Master-Thesis SuSe 2021

Maximiliane Nirschl


Juniorprofessur Computational Architecture

Jun.-Prof. Dr. Reinhard König

Juan Carlos Carvajal Bermúdez


The modular installation consists of a physically interactive floor and interactive seating objects, augmented by a digital artwork that can be accessed through smartphones. Interactive wood slices, tree trunk stools and tree trunk benches integrated in squared floor panels contain light strings through which a meditative light pattern constantly pulses, connecting all elements visually. The modular design allows for easy transportation and maximum adaptivity to different spaces. It is also a comment on how humans always try to make things fit into well-measured boxes. Passers-by can physically interact with the installation. Each time somebody steps or sits down on an element, it responds to the presence of the human and changes its light pattern, while all elements of the installation react to the interaction by displaying a short light impulse. The stools and benches are made from beech or oak wood. Both beeches as well as oaks are indigenous European species and are endangered by forestry. Almost no primeval beech or oak forest is left in central Europe. WebAR technology allows to augment the installation with digital content, without having to download an app. By scanning displayed QR codes at the site, visitors can easily access the second layer of the installation, an Augmented Reality website. It enables the users to see the ground becoming a mirror surface, reflecting the tree crowns of a virtual forest. One can now also see through the smartphone what is normally hidden to the human eye. Tiny dots floating in the air become visible - olfactory messages between the trees. When tapping on the screen another invisible universe unfolds - the world within the forest’s ground, intervened by the Mycelium, the fungi system that connects the trees. The visitor can now also see tiny light impulses, visualizing messages sent from tree to tree.

Funding agencies : Frauenförderfonds Bauhaus-Universität Weimar