Symbiosia Thijs Biersteker (NL) - CODAworx

Symbiosia Thijs Biersteker (NL)

Submitted by Thijs Biersteker

Client: fondation cartier pour l'art contemporain

Location: Paris , France

Completion date: 2020

Project Team


thijs Biersteker

Woven studio


Boompje studio

Boompje studio

head of studio

Sophie de krom

Woven studio


Plant Neurobiologist Stefano Mancuso and artist Thijs Biersteker created an artwork that uncovers the invisible tree to tree communication in real time to start a conversation about the effects of climate change.
With a series of sensors attached to two living trees ‘Symbiosia’ creates a generative animation of the growth patterns of the two trees. The volatile organic compound measurements indicate the increase of warning signals in the communication between the trees as their surrounding changes. When watching the trees grow and “talk” to each other the work hopes to start a conversation about the real time impact of environmental changes, like climate change and pollution, on nature.


Creating awareness for climate change trough art and technology. Giving nature a voice in a language tha we understand


Next to this sensors capture the light spectrum, soil moist, rain, dendrometer and other weather data. This is combined in an algorithm that uses 12.000 data points to create one single tree growth-ring every second, instead of every year. The distance between the rings, every bending curve, every sprouting knot reveals how the tree was reacting in real time to the changes in its environment. Uncovering the hidden liveliness of trees and the environmental impact we have on nature on a daily basis.

Additional Information

Credits website ‘Symbiosia’ 2019 Commissioned by: Fondation Cartier pour l'art contemporain, Paris (France) Artist: Thijs Biersteker Science collaboration: Stefano Mancuso Head of Studio: Sophie de Krom Technical Design: Boompje Studio With special thanks to: Decent Lab, Kvadrat, Kees Plattel, Casper van der Meer, Matrix Metaalbewerking, End of Time