- Year: 2018... ongoing
- Team: Ayodamola Tanimowo Okunseinde, Ashley Lewis
Concept, Design, Technology
The Slime Tech Lab (STL) is a mobile laboratory and living system that explores new futures through science, technology and storytelling. The STL is an art piece in itself - in roaming around New York it experiences feelings akin to the diaspora as it navigates to unpack its own narrative. As a beacon for futuristic exploration, it unfolds to teach spectators of the marvel of slime mold, revealing how this primordial organism can inform us about problem solving, equity and social cooperation. Our aim is to investigate it within our local communities. What can we learn from slime mold that can help us create an equitable society? What can be gleaned from biocultures that can help us reimagine borders and immigration? What would a future look like with decentralized information? The STL helps communities look to slime mold to envision vibrant, diverse futures through speculative design and microbiology.
Slime mold is a bright, vivid, living monoculture. Due to its ability to grow in the pattern of nodes and branches, technologists have been using it as a tool and medium to represent a wide array of efficient systems, from the functionality of the Internet to the decision making patterns of algorithmic artificial intelligence. Once mistakenly classified as a part of the fungi animal kingdom, this fascinating eukaryotic organism has the remarkable capacity to both aggregate into a multicellular structure as well as live freely as single cells.
It's segregation to the fringes of the sociataly applauded decompositional systems has left it largely unresearched, under explored and often misrepresented. We see slime mold for its metaphoric familiarity to the othered experience. We see its beauty, its immense potential to enrich ecological landscapes and we are here to be empowered with and through it to liberate new methods of thinking about the future, creating art and empathetically connecting us with marginalized sectors.