Frolic in a Suspended Ball Pit of Color and Sound

Purring Tiger explore the micro world with a 200-ball installation.

by Anya Tchoupakov
Dec 29 2015, 4:00pm

Images courtesy the artists

Long interested in the individual’s place between the macro and the micro worlds, artists Aaron Sherwood and Kiori Kawai (in collaboration as Purring Tiger) have built a large structure with 200 hanging, translucent balls, each containing a speaker. When a ball is touched, it generates a unique sound, and lights up with one of five different colors. As viewers explore the structure and play with the balls they are “engulfed by a symphony of lights and sounds surrounding them on all sides,” as Purring Tiger explains. The piece is called MICRO. It focuses solely on the micro world and “elucidates how we are interconnected with that world,” Sherwood tells The Creators Project.

MICRO from Aaron Sherwood on Vimeo.

MICRO was an honorarium installation at Burning Man in 2014, where a number of dance performances were executed involving the piece. But even without dancers, the experience of MICRO is interactive and fun. “With MICRO we really wanted to surround people from every direction within the piece,” says Sherwood. “We’ve found that by adding a touch component to our pieces, people’s sense of wonder is much more easily activated. This is really what we want to achieve. It’s fun watching people play with MICRO, adults start acting like kids, and kids can understand what is going on immediately.” It is this element of play that makes MICRO a piece that is inviting and engaging to a wide variety of audiences, allowing each visitor to explore the micro world of their own experience within the structure.

See more of MICRO in the images below:

Learn more about Purring Tiger and MICRO here.


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burning man
Aaron Sherwood
Kiori Kawai
Purring Tiger