Action Plant explores a speculative proposal to empower threatened species of plants with the ability to flee from their aggressors.
Plants are moving creatures. Their movement however generally remains invisible to us, because their muscle and nerve-like systems operate at a very slow timescale and their rooting in soil confines their motion to the movement of branches and leaves. These restrictions give plants an enormous disadvantage compared to their main aggressors: animals and humans, in many instances resulting in a loss of biodiversity and even extinction.
The Action Plant project explores a speculative proposal to empower threatened species of plants with the ability to flee from their aggressors. During his Summer Session residency at V2_, Brazilian artist Ivan Henriques will collaborate with biologist Bert van Duijn from Leiden University and the developers of the V2_Lab to build a first Action Plant prototype. This prototype will interface a plant with an off-the-shelf motor system, and will use the action potential of the plant to sense when it is being touched. By doing so, the plant will be able to speedily drive away in response to human touch.