The term sowing machines is derived from early mechanic machinery used to plant seeds. These complicated mechanics are a symbol for the early technological revolution in which systems were still analogue and easy to comprehend. Based on this reference we built autonomous working machines, using physical forces of nature and urban infrastructure in order to point out the direct relation between input and output.
The project’s name is equivocal – it stands for the reference (the sowing machine) as well as for the act of installing machines in public space (to sow machines).
This idea shows the roots of our project: By using cheap rapid manufacturing technics like 3D-printing, the installation of several objects in public space is comparable to the act of sowing. Therefore, pedestrians are able to see and interact with the work. The publication and sharing of the machines’ blueprints online works as an addition and spreads our „seed“ worldwide. This way, almost everyone is able to be part of the sowing machines project.
This unique object uses the blowing wind to drive a clock. The clock is not meant to be precise – it rather reflects our subjective perception of time. Therefore we installed it at subway stations, which are themselves symbols for our time-controlled all day life with its frequency defined by man-made machinery. The clock only starts to move its pointers if a train runs in the station, periodically bringing strong waves of wind with it.
SINGING IN THE RAIN
To break and change the negative connotation rain has got in most parts of our urban society, we build a machine which uses the force of rain in drain pipes to drive a music box. Just when the sky turns dark and heavy rain falls down on earth, the turning mechanism plays „singing in the rain“ in high and clear notes.
In order to examine concepts for changing our environment in playful ways, we built N°5. It is a perfume dispenser which is triggered by pigeons trying to get a fry which is positioned at the tip of the machine. Its loaded with perfume sample bottles of „Chanels N°5“ and gives the pigeon a discreet but perceptible scent. Thereby N°5 transforms a public place‘s smell within hours.
We found a public men’s toilet which embodies beauty and ugliness at the same time. We constructed a bespoke „pee game“ for this place, which is playful, lovely and at the same time mean. If triggered by curious men it loads itself and pees back with a tiny drop.
Our pop culture is driven by fame and unattainable stars who live lives many seem to dream of. Our district of Neukölln is one of the underdeveloped areas of Berlin where you will never see famous people in – not yet at least. We built an object which is a reference to one of the most famous pictures of pop culture and draws the autograph of Marilyn Monroe driven by the wind coming from a subway ventilation tunnel.