Document Type

Video file

Publication Date



Photosynthesis (2019) is a 4:52 minute video piece that dives into the layers of energetic interactions between plants and photons. It begins at the perceptual layer of visual investigation of leaf structures, with the rhythm of focus – defocus suggesting the diurnal rhythm of plant activity due to sunlight. It descends into the waveform abstraction, emitting light from leafy images. It briefly projects human observational artifacts, lenses and prisms, that represent observer participation in resolving quantum phenomena. The piece ends by collapsing into the quantum, inspired by recent experimental evidence that chloroplasts select for each photon’s most energetic state before collapsing it into the classical state for consumption.

Creative Commons License

Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.


All image analysis for feature extraction, filtering, and transformation is performed by the artist's custom software, written in Processing and multi-threaded Java. As with all of the artist's visual work, the interactive software serves like a visual instrument that the artist plays, capturing a recording of the piece. This work is partially inspired by my work with data science students using machine learning tools Weka and scikit-learn to analyze seasonal and diurnal changes in dissolved oxygen levels in PA streams as a function of photosynthesis, using on-line data from US Geological Survey sensors. https://faculty.kutztown.edu/parson/fall2018/linear458fall2018ANSWERS.pdf