Furnished Fluid is visualization that utilizes the air flow that we are practically unaware of in our daily lives. By applying fluid simulation technology — with seemingly no relation to daily life — to the objects overflowing in our surroundings, the complex and elaborate air flow and ecosystem that are invisible to the naked eye but present all around us are made apparent.
As a symbol of 20th century industrial design, miniatures of chairs are placed in front of three 4K displays. W. W. Stool (1990) by Philippe Starck, Robie House 1 (1908) by Frank Lloyd Wright, and the Big Easy (1991) by Ron Arad were selected in tribute to these great designers, as the works are unrivaled and magnificent in beauty.
Form data for the chairs were input initially into fluid dynamics software that was developed independently; it calculates the density and velocity of virtual space in real time at a speed of 45 frames per second. Then, it dynamically renders particles’ movements and colors. In the fluid simulation, it focused on the characteristic parts of the three chairs and calculated the behavior of the surrounding fluids on a two-dimensional scale. This process resembles the CT scanning of internal parts of the human body that are invisible to the naked eye. The aim is to slice the complex and turbulent forms surrounding the chairs flatly so that they can be understood intuitively.
We offer two visualization modes. Air mode describes the air flow surrounding the furniture by displaying fine particles against a white background. To derive various interpretations regarding air flow and stagnation generated by the chairs and furniture forms, values for fluid viscosity and time steps vary. Stellar mode expresses the microcosm of the current that the chairs generate by utilizing particles that radiate a blue light against a black background. In both modes, the particles are colored according to their velocity and the density of the field; they vividly illustrate the ecosystem of the current pattern.
This installation, which integrates design miniatures and real-time images, enables us to use the power of science to make visible the appealing and valuable aspects of industrial design that have been invisible up to the present time. As the beholder observes the constantly changing image of fluids, he/she begins to catch the details of a chair that have always existed but which could not be perceived by the senses. At the same time, the beholder perceives the vivid features of the chair’s form, such as its curve, lattice work, and surface, which are also communicated with vibrancy in the current’s pattern within the surrounding space.
This work is an attempt to search for common ground from the aspects of physicality and sculptured forms in industrial design and computerized, data-driven sculptures.
Artist : AKIRA WAKITA
Excerpt Movie Direction : KOHEI TSUJI
Commissioned by AnyTokyo 2014 with the support of Sony and Vitra & Artek.