Amy Landesberg, Stuart Romm, Hudson Treu, Jordan Graves

16’ x 40’ Interactive Digital Display

Georgia Institute of Technology Library Media Bridge

Video: Gather the Forest

Image 1: a group gathered to plant the forest
Image 2: the website interface
Image 3: the forest has emerged
Image 4: more planting has taken place
Image 5: the forest has fully gathered

Come to the Media Bridge and find a dynamic sky with a few awaiting trees. Look up through the roots: That’s where the tree community intertwines. Connect to engage the latent forest and add a tree. You have to be there. Others who come by or that you might bring with you also add trees to the stand. A sympathetic human group gathers, and together builds the forest stand. Afforestation of the image takes place, and the nascent community assemblage shares the capacity to act.

Gather to celebrate the spectacular canopy that makes Atlanta a tree haven, a City in the Forest.  Our canopy is vulnerable. You can act: Plant trees with Trees Atlanta:

The Site – Media Bridge Vital discourse, whether textual or visual, initiates a bridge between diverse positions and viewpoints. Our intent for Gather the Forest is to achieve working interaction between passers-by, to reward curiosity and exploration, to invite mutual introductions, and to do so through the example of the beneficial interdependency of a forest community.

A forest?

A tree is never alone. Like all living things, it belongs to a community of organisms that depend on each other. Think of the great sequoias: Their roots are all connected, and they hold each other up. Just a few feet below the ground is their massive, interconnected support system. They intertwine to share nutrients and nurture one another.

This Forest?

After dreaming the forest scene in digital modeling software, tree models were exported individually for feeding into an AI image generation tool. Using an image-to-image model, the AI process systematically added an enhanced degree of realism unachievable through standard modeling processes, uniquely to each tree.

The installation is written in JavaScript and runs in the web browser. This code removes backgrounds from the AI-generated images and layers them into one composition with varying opacities. The installation uses a Node.js server to handle communication between viewer’s devices and the installation display. To encourage gathering on site, geolocation is used to only allow participation when near the bridge.  

How to gather? 

Scan the QR code on the Media Bridge screen and connect to a web page with instructions.