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Autonomous Abstraction, Continuous Phenomena from the Universe to the Self

teamLab, 2022, Interactive Digital Installation, Endless, Sound: teamLab



Autonomous abstraction.
The dots of light blink and change color in cycles unique to each dot. A spontaneous order phenomenon occurs between dots that are close to each other, and their hues and the rhythm at which they blink gradually synchronize. When people touch them, the rhythm of the blinking hues change and are randomized, but the dots close to each other once again cause a spontaneous order phenomenon between them.
The dots of lights emit a tone each time they blink. The tones can be heard continuously throughout the space; what sounds like music is solely created by the continuous tones produced by the blinking lights.

A spontaneous order phenomenon occurs when different rhythms influence each other and synchronize. Examples include when the pendulums of two clocks gradually begin to swing together; when many fireflies gather in one tree and all start blinking at the same time, creating a larger light as a whole; or when the cells that make up the heart synchronize and tremble simultaneously to create the pulse of the heart. This can be seen in various systems, from physical phenomena, neurophysiology, to ecosystems. Although the individual parts do not have the ability to observe the whole, the phenomenon of self-organization is the creation of an ordered and larger structure, resulting from the autonomous behavior of each individual part influencing each other. This phenomenon is also known as spontaneous order. This artwork is forever evolving, changing from moment to moment due to the people in the space.

It is believed that entropy (a measurement of the lack of order in a system) in the universe will steadily increase (the law of increasing entropy) and that entities with form eventually collapse. Despite that, it is a wonder that the sun was created and the planets were born, that life was formed and societies exist. However, the reason why the universe, life, nature, and society continue to be maintained in spite of this may be because order is continuously formed on its own through the shared phenomenon of self-organization in the midst of disorder. In other words, the universe and our own existence are a continuous order created by the same phenomenon.