“The amazing thing is that every atom in your body came from a star that exploded. And, the atoms in your left hand probably came from a different star than your right hand. It really is the most poetic thing I know about physics: You are all stardust.”
–Lawrence M. Krauss
I saw this beautiful fact in the form of a quote somewhere online, and it has stuck with me since. Later, I discovered that it was part of Lawrence Krauss’ Cosmic Connections Lecture. This quote is a beautiful reference to the interconnectedness we possess, and that nowadays can be felt more present through our online interactions. This idea, paired with an exploration of Lise Hansen‘s Sync project were discoveries that led me to my final piece. She is currently doing her PhD at AHO (Oslo’s School of Architecture), which explores full-body movement as design material for interaction, and I have been following up her work.
While exploring Hansen’s tool for visualizing movement data, I noticed that the system couldn’t track my body, and was only tracking one person. Seeing our digital skeletons, I tried to “steal” it, and this resembled a sort of digital “tag”. What if I could create an experience that felt like this digital tag, but using the Stardust metaphor?
I had the idea for my final piece in this MA to pass stardust back and forth, from one person to the other, as a metaphor for interconnectedness, and alluding to the playful situation of “tag”. There was another thing that I wanted to explore: instead of using a screen to see our digital selves, I wanted to have the stardust on our actual bodies, so they would somehow be projected on to the participants. I developed this project conceptually, aesthetically and technically. For the technical aspect I had help from my external tutors, and needed a LOT of patience, since I made a leap from working with Processing to working with openFrameworks and c++. For the first time. (Open-source rules!).