I've heard it said that if you removed everything from the forest except for fungi you would still be able to discern outlines of trees and leaves because of the vast fungal networks of pervading everything. I've often thought that would make a powerful illustration but never got around to acting on it. So when Nervous System, a company dedicated to making beautiful objects based off of mathematical formulas derived from nature, came out with new "species" in their Hyphae Lamp series, I was captivated. No two lamps are the same; they simply let their formulas do the designing and then print up the results. The resulting lamps cast eerie networks of shadows, reminding us of the lurking fungal networks that live largely out of sight and are only noticed when they bloom as mushrooms.
Nervous Systems' website is a smorgasbord of fascinating videos, objects, science art musings related to their work, and generative software you can use to create your own science art. They also have an exhibit up currently at Simons Center for Geometry and Physics at Stonybrook University through September 30.
For the third year running, we are turning September into a month-long celebration of science artists by delivering a new morsel of sciart to chew on each day. Totally yum? Check out what was previously featured on this day:
2013: Skeletal Drawing with artwork by Scott Hartman
2012: The Seizure with artwork by Max Klinger