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Parc des Compagnons, Montreal, 2018

“Taking over some of the public space of the Compagnons de Saint-Laurent Park in Montreal, this open-air laboratory was proposed to provide tools and means for a citizen and artistic reclaiming of the digital realm […]”

— Camille Montuelle, Perte de signal

Alveoli is a kinetic and luminous installation that unfolds in rhythm with a breathing pattern influenced by the ambient air quality index. One breath corresponds to a day’s worth of data. The data used represent the ozone concentration in the air during July 2018 and come from two distinct stations. One of them, station 80, is located 1.7 km from the Parc des Compagnons de St-Laurent, while the other is in downtown Mexico City.

Ozone (O3) is a substance naturally found in the environment at very low concentrations. In cities, it can be formed in large quantities by the reaction between nitrogen oxides and organic compounds emitted mainly by vehicles using fossil fuels. These reactions are activated by solar energy.

In Mexico, the official standard (2014) recommends concentrations below 70 ppb for an eight-hour average, while Canadian standards are set at 65 ppb.

Exterior installation featured in Crépuscule, a Citizen Laboratory of Digital Art, in collaboration with the city of Montreal and artist-run centre Perte de Signal.

Nylon, microcontroller, ventilator, LED light system.
Variable size, approximately 300 x 250 cm in diameter each.

Electronics and coding: Samuel St-Aubin
Inflatables: Stéphane St-Georges
Photos: Alexis Bellavance