The Cyborganics Project is a weird – and wonderful – creature. The Cyborganic is a fantasy, a design fiction, living in a world where technology is not cold, hard, and dead, but warm, soft and alive. A human-machine-nature hybrid of organic augmentation. A temporal assemblage, where old wisdom and future vision can meet. Human and nonhuman. It grew out of the first Haptic Interface workshop held in Hong Kong in 2012, as a collaboration with Tricia Flanagan. Since then it has undergone many transformations, made many meanings and also spend quite some time hibernating inside dark cardboard boxes, on shelves, in transit and in the care of perplexed customs officials. It began its existence as a twin: The Bamboo Whisper. The Bamboo Whisper is a sympoetic device. It lets us experience otherness of being. Its process of socio-technical evolution is described in more detail here.
The Bamboo Whisper arrived in the danish city of Aarhus in early summer 2016. What was intended as a short visit, has become a long-term stay as it now extends its existence out into the city, a city which goes mostly unnoticed to us humans, a city of crevices, borrows, cracks and places of weeds and rotting wood. It is the wild, feral city. Its citizens, a heterogeneous crowd of unregistered little creatures. For a long time they were unwelcome, hunted, displaced, exterminated. But times are changing and as we realize the self-destructive fallacy of our behavior we invite them back. Rewilding the city. Rethinking Urban Habitats.
In Aarhus the Natural History Museum, the city council and private citizens are working to diversify the species inhabiting the city. Initiatives range from letting wild grasses and flowers grow on the roadsides, to building structures like insect-hotels and greening facades, even fountains. Here is a map of all the different initiatives. As an experiential, sympoetic link, living in the shadowy borderland of them and us, the Cyborganic can feel how insects feel and connect us to this feral city topology.