Kamiko is the creative vision of artist and designer Karlen Chang, Creative Director of the design firm mixMotion. An interactive kinetic sculpture that debuted at the TEDx Toronto 2013 party, the work explores the future of smart objects—and considers a future in which objects become self-aware. The idea was to link the past to the present: ancient animism meets the Internet of Things.
Looking to the art of origami for inspiration, mixMotion honed in on the geometric folds of paper fortune tellers (also known as cootie-catchers), a generations-old childrens' game. “The insight is that with the right design, even a simple piece of folded paper can create a range of dramatic emotions,” writes Karlen Chang, the creative director of mixMotion.
Although the structures look like they've been crafted from paper, the medium is actually a moisture- and tear-proof synthetic material, with a center crystal that houses sensors. These sensors both detect and react to the presence of humans—when fully engaged, the work opens about five feet wide. All of its movements are controlled by a microcontroller and motor system.
Visitors to the Erarta, the largest private museum of contemporary art in Russia, will soon be able tointeract with Kamiko in the museum's permanent collection. For more information, check out the Kamiko microsite.
Explore more of mixMotion’s interactive projects here.