Wood Wide Web is a collaborative piece created by artists Kanchan Joneja (India), Kristina Pulejkova (UK), Anupam Mahajan (India) and Cameron Naylor (UK).
Conceived as a hybrid interactive installation, the work brings ancient endangered trees from India and the UK to life through the use of skeletal tracking and AI. The sacred forests get personified and tell their stories, evoking empathy in humans across the globe to inspire more care for the planet.
In the Wood Wide Web, endangered tree ecosystems from India and UK get personified and tell their stories of erasure, mourning the loss of their existence. Using stories, sounds, interviews and visual data from the field shared by Farmers for Forests, India and the Kew Gardens Library, London, the AI models have been trained to generate text and textures that make the elder giants come alive. Through the use of skeletal tracking, people are able to embody an ancient tree that shares its story, feeling interconnectedness, empathy and melancholy. This will reawaken the importance of preserving old forests and reforesting land towards reducing carbon footprint as well as increasing and protecting the biodiversity of these habitats, needed for both nature and human survival during the current climate crisis. Wood Wide Web is an act of embodiment to inspire more care for the planet in an increasingly desensitised world.
Using data provided by Farmers for Forests (India) and Kew Gardens Library (London), we have created an immersive space where audiences are able to embody ancient trees and become part of a climate conference between these elder giants. Through the use of skeletal tracking, people embody an ancient tree and tap into a secret language, taking place across a global mycelial network, or the Wood Wide Web.
Wood Wide Wb is Co-commissioned / co-curated / co-produced / co-presented by BeFantastic and FutureEverything at FutureFantastic Festival, supported by the British Council, as part of the India/UK Together Season of Culture.
3D development and interaction design: Anupam Mahajan
Text Generation: Kristina Pulejkova & Kanchan Joneja
Narrative building and user experience: Kanchan Joneja
Programming: Kristina Pulejkova
Sound Design: Cameron Naylor
VFX: Apratim Verma
Rigging and Animation: Anchit Mathur
Plantscaping: The Shimmering Seed
Photo & video documentation: Mayank Joneja
Video editing: Cameron Naylor
With data from:
Farmers for Forests, India
Kew Gardens London, UK