The Rice-Pile Model


Kinetic Sound Installation

The real world is a complex system formed by a network of interconnected entities. Such a system exhibits very unique dynamics where the concept of criticality or the tipping point is very important and relevant to us.

The Rice-Pile Model is based on the physical model of the same name for studying complex critical phenomena such as climate change, avalanche, as well as the spread of diseases and stock market crash. It is a reminder that miniature changes can trigger a drastic event (like a landslide) at a much larger system scale.

We translate the minute granular motion into loud trembling sounds on-the-fly with the help of motion detection and sound technologies. The audio/visual installation oscillate the senses of the viewers between the microscopic and the macroscopic world.

While the audience are captivated in the “live experiment” in front of them, the work also prompts them to understand the underlying mechanisms for the issues we face today, such as the climate change, ant-microbial resistance, food security and biodiversity. These are all examples of critical phenomena arising from complexity, which has become increasingly evident and relevant to us.

© Legacy Lab International
© Legacy Lab International

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Legacy Lab International is an art collective founded in 2013, a collaborative practice consists of multi-disciplinary artists, designers, engineers and scientists. Its works stem from research of natural and social phenomena, integrating new technology and traditional media, lying on the borderline between science and contemporary art. The creation of the group ranges from visual arts, installations to performances.

At Legacy Lab International, an art piece is the manifestation of the philosophy and methodology behind. Each creative process involves a series of research and experimentation to understand and extract the underlying principles. Their works prompt the viewers to re-exam how we live and our relations with the surroundings.

Credits & mentions

This project is kindly supported by Taiwan Contemporary Culture Lab.
Special thanks to Diemo Schwarz (IRCAM, Paris) for the assistance of CataRT program.

Artistic Director: Ivan Liu
Mechanical design: Alvin Chen
Software program: Daniel Boubet and Wei-Zhe Tseng