Machine in Flux – Wood

Sunjoo Lee (KR), Ko de Beer (NL)

A documentation and cartography of time and environment inspired by the growth mechanism of the tree’s annual rings. The machine sensitively responds to changes of light, wind, temperature, humidity and sound – and inscribes these influences using ink on paper.

Machine in Flux

It starts by drawing a circle, then follows its own line and continues to draw the next line. The spiral motion enables the machine to autonomously grow its own drawing which resembles the tree’s annual rings. Through time a unique, unforeseen pattern emerges. The finished drawing shows where and when the light had been shining, temperature fluctuations, the direction and strength of the wind, and so on, through the delicate differences in the countless lines. It is an exploration into the smallest programmable building blocks that make up complex natural phenomena, and discovering the capacities of machines to emulate nature.

Project Credits / Acknowledgements

Made in support from MAD emergent art center and BioArt Laboratories
Funded by Cultuur Eindhoven
Advised by Prof. Sass-Klaassen and Prof. Sterck from Wageningen University & Research
This project is co-funded by the European Commission´s DG CONNECT, in the framework of the Horizon 2020 programme of the European Union under the S+T+ARTS programme´s Regional STARTS Centers.


Sunjoo is a multimedia artist from South Korea. Sunjoo mainly works on topics that tackle the delicate interrelation between nature, technology and human life. Ko de Beer is an electronics wizard and a performer who makes and programs synthesizers and robots. Sunjoo and Ko are based in the Netherlands, collaborating to make kinetic and audiovisual artworks.

Europäische Kommission Horizon 2020