Turritopsis nutricula
aaajiao solo exhibition: cybernetics

Turritopsis nutricula
size variable
Computer Generated Moving Image installation
algorithm generated Turritopsis nutricula

computer graphics : aaajiao, liu xiaoguang

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First discovered in the Mediterranean in 1883, the Turritopsis Nutricula is a hydrozoan, whose Medusa (jellyfish) is effectively immortal. When threatened, the Medusa’s cells can age backwards from sexual maturity to those halcyon days of jellyfish childhood. From there, they age again, then regress again, ad infinitum. This happens through a process called transdifferentiation, in which one type of cell switches to another type. For this piece, aaajiao created an algorithmically generated swarm of these creatures. As the pixelated bloom floats by, one thinks about how the digital age confounds the linear march of time. The two poles of Turritopis‘s existence–youth and sexual maturity–find parallel in our division between the virtual world and the physical.