A synergy between nature and technology

Habitat  is a data-driven installation by Heleen Blanken with software developer NAIVI and sound artist Stijn van Beek, presented for the first time at Nxt Museum. The work translates 3D scans of organic artefacts from Leiden’s Naturalis Biodiversity Center into a game-like, meditative environment. These ever-mutating ‘digital worlds’, each accompanied by their own bespoke composition, are responsive to the movement of visitors and appear reflected and distorted in a body of water on the museum floor.

Heleen Blanken is a visual artist and lives and works in Amsterdam. She levitates across the fields of cinematography, installation art, new media, scenography and sculpture. She holds a degree in Fine Arts from the Gerrit Rietveld Academy.

Deeply influenced by the complex exchange between humanity and the natural environment, her artistic practice explores the different layers of our aesthetic perception of the natural world while defining traditional artistic dichotomies like the organic vs. artificial and analog vs. digital. In her work, she raises questions on how we contemplate ideas of nature.

Heleen’s work has been shown internationally in curated shows at institutes such as Nxt Museum, Stedelijk Museum, Gropius Bau Berlin, La Gaîté Lyrique, Gallery Ron Mandos, Musée d’art contemporain and Ars Electronica. She has collaborated with institutes such as Naturalis, Museum für Naturkunde Berlin and the Institute for Geosciences.

“Researching the space between humanity, the natural environment and future possible interactions between these entities is what interests me — uncertainty is a dominating and always exhilarating element.” | Heleen Blanken