Synthazards are synthetic fabrications of natural hazards which forms are generated by various algorithms and machines. They are manufactured by using different rapid prototyping techniques, laser cutouts, and cnc. The following natural hazards are prototyped: earthquake, drought, whirlpool, lightning, volcano, tsunami, tornado and lava. The objects are focusing on formal aspects of these phenomena. What is apparent in fabrications is a unique synthetic form, which is given by algorithms and inscribed in the language of prototyping machines.
Natural hazards affect human activities because of the lack of planning and appropriate emergency management systems. They lead to various types of losses: financial, environmental and human. The quantities of losses usually depend of human preparedness to prevent the disasters. A natural hazard will never turn into a disaster if there are no humans involved. That is why natural as an attribute is highly questionable here.
Synthazards are dealing with beauty and form of natural hazards in the times when life on planet earth is changing drastically. There are three layers that interact in this work
The manufactured objects are replicating the forms of natural hazards as almost as the creators are taking the role of architects building models of the buildings, which form they want to understand more. Synthetic prototypes don’t represent patterns for full-scale models, but they are reversely engineered as 3D visualizations of existing phenomena in nature. In the manufacturing processes what is detached from the structural properties of the hazards are the methods, materials, and even manpower used for production.
Algorithms, generative pace and knowledge
All prototypes are generated by algorithms that range from a random walk, to voronoi or fluid dynamics algorithms. Some of these algorithms are written on the whiteboards next to classifications, structural properties, and other information about hazards. The pace of algorithmic form dictates how we ‘choose’ or replicate beauty inspired by natural hazards. Beauty of synthetic form is juxtaposed with our need to understand the hazards, classify them and explain their structures.
Sublime phenomena converted into aesthetic experience
In this project several moments in the life of a hazard are classified as subliminal. They include: the ways tornados, volcanoes, tsunamis, droughts, and other hazards affect our lives when they turn into disasters, the moments when hazards are formed, or the consequences of some other activities in nature that lead to the creation of a hazard. All of these are neglected and the focus is shifted towards observations of the natural beauties, which is prototyped by machines and algorithms.
Synthazards is on display from 17th February 2009 until 18th May 2009 in Singapore, Institute of Contempurary Arts, Lasalle College of the Arts.
syntfarm (Germany/Serbia/Singapore) is founded by Andreas Schlegel and Vladimir Todorovic in April 2007 in the very clean city of Singapore. The group focuses on the preservation of expressions and structures that are found in various dynamic (eco)systems.