Exploring the human-insect relationship with Arduino

The team at OFL Architecture recently devised an interactive piece of architecture dedicated to the human-insect relationship.


Inspired by a desire to explore the connection between both man and nature, a team comprised of a biologist, a sound engineer, a composer, and an architect built an installation entitled Wunderbugs. The convergence of architecture, art and engineering added a special dynamic to the construction of this piece, while the pavilion itself devised of wood using both traditional techniques and CNC machinery.


The designers created Wunderbugs’ distinctive design by hybridizing patterns from the Roman Baroque with the geometric shapes and hives typically made by insects. The result is a crown-like outdoor room comprising of 1,104 arc modules, 92 rhombuses and 198 knobs.

Upon entering the pavilion, visitors become mere spectators of the natural world. “By playing with technology, the architecture and pavilion’s geometry create an outdoor room equipped with an audio installation in which the music makes through combining nature and human an inseparable (and abstract) relationship with the world’s harmony,” the team writes.


Within the 323-square-foot circular structure, six spherical interactive ecosystems are equipped with [Atmel based] Arduino boards and sensors for motion, humidity, temperature and intensity of sunlight. This data, along with the information collected by a network of ultrasonic sensors that track the position of visitors, is used to create an interactive soundtrack in real-time.

The project was designed for Maker Faire Rome, where it was installed earlier this month.

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