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Plumial Space

Image showing the interaction with the particle animation produced for Plumial Space.

Featured in:
Orleans House Gallery, U.K. 2021
Project awarded by YouFab Global Creative Awards, Japan 2020
London College of Fashion, Arcade East Gallery, U.K. 2018
Clot Magazine, online edition U.K. 2018
Production year: 2018
Mediums: interactive particle animation created in openFrameworks • wearable prototypes made of fabrics and 3D printed structures made of PLA filaments • digital illustrations printed on fabric and mounted on stainless steal frames.
A project by Nestor Pestana with Deborah Tchoudjinoff.

Plumial Space is an immersive installation, where the audience is invited to experience simulations of their microbial plume. Prototypes of fashion artefacts are presented alongside this, representing personality archetypes from a speculative scenario exploring the microbial plume and its possible cultural interactions.

We release 37 million microbes per hour from our bodies; this is called the microbial plume. These microbes are so unique to each of us that scientists are currently developing ways to identify people using them.

In a possible future scenario when technologies of microbial plume identification have become part of the everyday, new modes of self expression and behaviour emerge. Different personality archetypes alter their way of dress to help them contain, spread or invite microbial organisms into their bodies. It also begins to reflect different ideas about how we understand ourselves or relate to others and the environment.

This project was the outcome of a 4 months Design Residency hosted by Fashion space Gallery and part of Arcade East's summer programme, which focused on Sustainability and Innovation.  

Video showing Plumial Space installed at London College of Fashion, Arcade East Gallery 2018.

Pictures showing visitors interacting with the installation.

Prototypes of wearable artefacts

Untreaceables are wary of their microbial data being available to others. To make sure their microbial identity cannot be traced, they use wearable artefacts that limit the distribution of their microbes.
Spreaders aim to distribute their microbial plume into everything and everyone. They want to be sure that all things retain a part of their identity. They use wearable artefacts to facilitate the spread of their microbes.
Deceivers take on the microbial plume of others. They like to try on different identities, unsure of what might be the best outcome. They use wearable artefacts designed to invite others to take part in a microbial exchange.

Detail of an illustration print mounted on a pyramid frame.

Other general views of the installation.

Arcade East, LCF Arts Programme:
Kat Thiel
Saphia Abrahamovitch-Venner
Technical team:
Creative Technologist - Mouhannad Al-Sayegh
Technical install - Fergus O’Connor
3D technician - Holly Shaw
This project had also the generous technical support from Holition and the Digital Learning Lab
Commissioned by Ligaya Salazar
Creative team:
Advisor - Raphael Kim
Sound Design - Sam Conran
Garment production - Radvile Kisieliute
Pattern cutter - Yevgeniya Melnyk
Photographs - Katy Davis

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