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Ambient Interfaces, 2016




Alejandro Borsani




Processing / Providence River / Viktor Schauberger /



We see water as an inanimate fluid and yet, we are 60% water, Its a vital part to all living organisms on this planet and we take it for granted. We consume chemically treated water and are told it's "healthy". And about 65% of our drinking water comes from our rivers. But what if our fresh waters are not as healthy as we think?


By researching the water's molecular structure, Providence River and its surroundings, as well as Viktor Schauberger's work, I started to understand how water is actually alive and how it responds to human activity. This is my first iteration of a Processing sketch that tried to exploit our current situation in our drinking water cycle. It uses data from different locations along the river and represents that data as a drawing.  Although, I only have a set of drawings for one of Providence River's head streams, I am continuing my research to better refine this project.

The drawings are composed of seven spirals– seven months of data collection. Each spiral is affected by five parameters which describe the nature of the spiral. Knowing this, each parameter's characteristic reflects whether or not the water is healthy and their constraints were carefully chosen to fit to Providence's normal levels. I tried to make the parameters affect the spiral similar to the way they affect the water in real life. For instance, when the water's pH level is too low the spirals have a very small radius and when the pH level is above 7.4 it has a very wide radius.

The following drawings analyze 7 months of the following years and are shown respectively:

2003 (Year of Fish Kill)

2005 (Clean Water Act Passed)

2010 (5 Years Later)

2015 (10 Years Later)

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