Updates from Team Sea Sense

The team perceived the problem of the stakeholders in Banilad regarding traditional fish searching during the community immersion on the second day of the workshop. The activities include area project reconnaissance, interview with concerned stakeholders and locals, and formulation of solution through art technology using indigenous materials and garbage.  This article further discusses the progress of the Sea Sense team from the perception of the problem to the inception of the project from April 16 to 29, 2016. Project planning, development, and simulation were done at the Waterspace Laboratory in Foundation University while actual testing of the partially completed project is conducted in the BOAT Lab at Banilad Marine Sanctuary.

The primary stakeholders are the fishermen and beneficiaries of the target community. Tasks were divided among the members of the Sea Sense team. Al Diego designed the circuit diagram and sensor programming. Moreover, Jeffrey Rivera did the configuration for automatic seawater sample suction and draining of sample. On the other hand, Geraldine Quiñones made the seawater data analysis and processing while Dae Habalo integrated science and technology to the project.

This project started with a week-long workshop and team building with Andrew Quitmeyer as the facilitator. After that, the team developed a prototype and presented the project idea on April 23, 2016, at the James B. Herring AVR. The presentation was attended by a representative from U.S. Embassy, Bantay-dagat president, wife of fishermen from Banilad, and Computer Studies and performing arts students. Feedback during the presentation was used to enhance the project. The group is motivated to complete the project based on the extraordinary reaction of the audience and acceptability of the project by the U.S. Embassy representative.

Andrew Quitmeyer then presented the team deliverables and project timeline. After which the group did the simulation, development and testing of the automatic multisensor seawater quality monitoring project considering the inputs of Andrew Quitmeyer.

Testing Process

Testing process in the Waterspace laboratory (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

The team performed the testing process in the Waterspace laboratory and actual sampling area in Banilad Marine Sanctuary. Initially, the technology is tested using fresh water sample then implemented in sea water. After the testing process, the team purchased materials and started coding the sensors for sea water sample detection using copper wire.

Sea water sample detection

Sea water sample detection using copper wire (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

The team celebrates for the successful completion of the sample seawater extraction, detection, coding, and simulation in Banilad Marine Sanctuary. At the moment, Sea Sense team is preparing for the May 1 project exhibition at the Negros Oriental Convention Center.

This is the second week of the Waterspace Incubator workshop. On May 1, Foundation University was invited by the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) to showcase state of the art programs. The University approved the participation of WaterSpace and Sea Sense was among nearly 20 exhibitors showcasing the work in progress at the Convention Center.


Exhibitors showcasing at the Convention Center (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

Sea Sense is practically busy preparing for the public exhibition and launching of BOAT Lab at the Banilad Marine Sanctuary on May 7, 2016.  Before the big day, the team acquired additional materials for the research and final exhibition such as portable divider, hose, and heat shrink wire connector. Al and Jeffrey assembled the PVC plumbing pipe and attached the frame to the experiment table for seawater extraction and draining procedures. Geraldine and Dae, on the other hand, completed the remaining deliverables (logo, how-tos, print documentation, poster) with the help of Jeffrey and a BSIT alumnus.Materials for the research and final exhibitionMaterials for the research and final exhibition

Materials for the research and final exhibition (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

The team made several attempts to test the dosing pump, sensing of the seawater sample and setting up of the exhibit in the covered portion of the BOAT Lab at Banilad Marine Sanctuary.

We finally extracted the sensor reading and display the value using grove LCD. The figure below shows the display of pH reading.

Display of pH reading
Display of pH reading(Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)
Succeeding tasks include extracting and displaying readings from Dissolved Oxygen, temperature, Turbidity. On May 26, we were given a chance by Ma’am Geraldine, as research director, to present our Sea Sense work-in-progress during the research forum. Our research project was entitled “Automated Multi-Sensor Technology for Sea Water Quality Parameters Monitoring in Banilad Marine Sanctuary”. Sea Sense has been awarded as one of the BEST PAPERS.
Automated Multi-Sensor Technology
Automated Multi-Sensor Technology for Sea Water Quality Parameters Monitoring in Banilad Marine Sanctuary” awarded as one of the BEST PAPERS (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

On June 2, we had visitors from DOST, PCAARD team, who were interested to look at the project and visit the Banilad BOAT Lab site.

Visitation to the Banilad Boat Lab site
Visitation to the Banilad Boat Lab site
Visitation to the Banilad Boat Lab site
Visitation to the Banilad Boat Lab site
Visitation to the Banilad Boat Lab site(Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)
Utilized the existing Arduino board of CCS to code and test the turbidity sensor.
Team Sea Sense
Team at work (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)
The LED that has been attached to the container no longer lit up so the group de-domed a new LED as a replacement.

a)    Malfunctioned LED removed from the container

Malfunctioned LED removed
Team at work (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

b)   New LED is tested before de-doming

New LED is tested
Team at work (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

c)    De-doming of New LED

 De-doming of New LED De-doming of New LED

Team at work (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

d)   Attach and test de-domed LED to the container

test de-domed LED

Team at work (Courtesy of Team Sea Sense)

Also, we started programming to extract reading from turbidity sensor.

Due to the environmental pollution tampering our mother Earth that is spreading across the world nowadays, team TAPOK (Tinguha Alang sa Pagpalapnag sa Obligasyong pang Kalikupan) have come up with an idea of spreading environmental awareness with the use of theater and arts in expressing perspectives. Furthermore, conjoining technology as a tool in redeeming our mother Earth into a more satisfying environment and a nourishing habitat, and the arts became a challenge and a necessity. Team TAPOK decided to present a theater play entitled LISO NI LAUM wherein the concerns in our community regarding water, land and air pollution is given an emphasis.

theater play entitled LISO NI LAUM
Theater play entitled LISO NI LAUM (Courtesy of Team TAPOK)

The team's project of promoting awareness through a creative performance will highlight on how we abused and misused our natural resources and on how we can reduce the environmental impacts from our day to day activities from simple ways to bigger actions. In the same manner, team TAPOK will be using costumes, sets, and props from scraps to illustrate our passion and advocacy.

Props from scrap illustration

Props from scrap illustration (Courtesy of Team TAPOK)

In the first five days of our rehearsal, we felt the challenge that says “we cannot do it” because most of the members of the project are first timers when it comes to theater arts and we all have different ideas, that makes everything change from time to time.

However, as we go along the process and met people with theater arts experiences, we grew in mind and in spirit that inspires us to finish and bring this project on stage and to people that will definitely give the ribbon for our project’s success — spreading awareness to the community.

"Earth’s intensifying cry" play

"Earth’s intensifying cry" play (Courtesy of Team Tapok) 

What do we like most in this project? Through team work, we have experienced how fun it is to co-work with young and artistic minds for our story. And how we creatively turned trash into costumes with Andrew Quitmeyer’s shared knowledge. Just as people should act with our Earth’s intensifying cry.

Team TAPOK took only two (2) weeks to prepare for our play entitled “Liso ni Laum” (Seed of Hope). Each of the individuals did their best during their rehearsals. Will the given two weeks be enough for them to present a jaw-dropping output?

Workshop conducted by YATTA

Workshop conducted by YATTA (Courtesy of Team Tapok)

During the project making, team TAPOK have been busy mounting our script. Our script was actually already composed during the workshop conducted by YATTA (Youth Advocates Through Theater Arts) but it became one of their struggles because of the often changes and additional ideas of some individuals are added. In the end, the script was finally made. Even though the actors for the play were first timers in acting they were good at it. The performers of this production were very excited because everyone contributed during the script making and some of them will perform on the beach for the first time.

The performers were in charge to their own costumes and props. To lessen the expenses, they borrowed from the YATTA’s properties like some of the props and costumes of the past plays. They also used recycle materials like disks, leaves, ribbons and bottle caps for their headdresses.

Props and Costumes

Props and Costumes (Courtesy of Team Tapok)

The team encountered some problems with time management, because some of the performers were often late during practices and sometimes they also do things not related to the play. We also struggled with movements, levels, blocking and dialogue, because they often forget their parts.

In regards with the sound effects, Liza Marie Ragusta was the stage manager at the same time that she was the sound technician. The sound effects were cool and hilarious. It made the audience guffaw and it added essence to the play.

Rojan Talita, their amateur director did a great job in directing and guiding the performers during the rehearsals.

Team TAPOK also have a song and dance number for the finale of the play. Some of their kapatids (siblings) from YATTA helped them with the vocalization for their song.

Team TAPOK had our technical/dress rehearsal last May 6, 2016 at Banilad Marine Sanctuary specifically on the BOAT Lab. Andrew Quitmeyer did a great job suggesting to Team TAPOK what they have to do to enhance their production. Right after the technical/dress rehearsal, Team TAPOK proceeded to their practice area (Consuelo Multi-Purpose Center) and there they applied the suggestions of Sir Andrew.

"The Garbage Monster" a cast of the play

A cast member of the play (Courtesy of Team Tapok)

Before the final exhibit the casts of the play prepared theirselves for the presentation. All of them looked good especially Basmuk (The Garbage Monster) who looked terrifying and perilous. Before the performance, the team prayed together for God’s blessings and guidance of their final exhibit.

During the Exhibition Day, May 7, 2016, Team TAPOK presented their play at Banilad Marine Sanctuary. Team TAPOK’s crew were excited and nervous at the same time on how the play would go. There were difficulties before the play started, one was the stage is too small, another was the lights. The stage during the exhibition day was too small than the one they practiced with, so as performers they have no choice but to go on with the show and adjust with changes. The lights used were of the same color. Those were just minor issues but the show must go on.

The play at Banilad Marine Sanctuary

The play at Banilad Marine Sanctuary(Courtesy of Team Tapok)

The play went well, but there were minor issues. First was a microphone always falls down, every time a huge bang occurs in the stage. Second was the cast was having a hard time adjusting on the small stage, they are afraid to move around because the stage’s floor isn’t level. Third was on their final act where they sang with a guitar but the guitar was late making the song lousy, but after a few lines the guitarist caught up with the singers.  Besides all that, the show went on like it didn’t happened. They had impromptu make-ups for their casts, which turned out awesome.

Team TAPOK received a well sounded ovation from crowd. With all the difficulties they had, and having 2 weeks to prepare for a play, Team TAPOK did a good job. A lot of people appreciated their work. All the time and effort spent to make play was indeed worth it. Showing people the effects of their actions to nature, and the consequences it brings. Sharing knowledge of the environment with people and giving them ideas on how to care for it. The cast had a great time with the show and so did the crowd. With every member of team TAPOK working together and some other support from other teams, everything in the plan was made to be. To sum everything up all of the teams did a very good job on that day. Everyone had fun, with the exhibits and the play. Everyone enjoyed the snacks served. Together with Team Viz, Sea Sense, F.U.P.P.I., and TAPOK the exhibit day ended well. Smiles were everywhere because of the great things they’ve done for the environment.

Team TAPOK will have their second show on 26th of May 2016. This will be held at Dumaguete City’s dumpsite, situated at Barangay Candau-ay.

The play "Liso ni Laum" The play "Liso ni Laum" (Courtesy of Team Tapok)

Team TAPOK took no rest in creating and spreading environmental awareness to the people of Dumaguete City as they staged their second performance of the play “Liso ni Laum”.

Last May 26, 2016 at exactly three in the afternoon, Team Tapok performed in the Dumaguete dumpsite, Candau-ay Dumaguete City, a place where all the garbage in the city are being delivered and deposited to decompose, with relatively a handful of locals residing in the area, some of them were scavengers in the site. The performance was part of the KAMPBATAAN 2016, a camp organized by the Youth Council of the Consuelo Foundation Life Skills plus Program through the Youth Advocates Through Theater Arts. The Project Manager of the program coordinated with the barangay’s councilor for the venue and other logistical needs.

As part of the team’s goal to spread awareness, the performance’ venue makes it more appropriate as it was surrounded by mountains of garbage, as some were already occupying the near vacant lot. The people who watched were so eager to see what will happen next as was observed on their faces as they were educated to the morals of the story. The play also fits the audience as most of them were scavengers and some were government officials who implements the law.

The Barangay Councilor was so touched by the story that the team was once again invited to perform on the feast of barangay Candau-ay.

Today, the team seeks for more partnerships of the LGU’s and NGO’s to create and spread awareness to more people, within or outside the city.

With increasing pollution levels, it is essential for our team to find new ways to psychologically approach a new medium pertaining to self awareness in relation to the environment. The aim for this project is, (1) to get people involved by sparking their interest, (2) to relay data from all the information we have regarding the environment and (3) to introduce technology and art as a way of emotionally connecting with people.

Our project has 3 different approaches and designs. The main project is to create a 3D projection screen that gives out a hologram like output with the use of fog and, of course, for that we need a machine that creates a fog. It's basically much more convenient to just buy a fog machine but locally we can’t find one and It’s much more “fun” and we get to experience and encounter different problems in building one which gives us more insight in the world of technology. We also needed to build a platform to direct the airflow of the fog in order to make the projection screen.

There is only one problem with the main project and that is the wind factor that might blow away the projection screen so came up with some backup plans which also serve as an output to give out data to people.

Two of the side projects is (1) to manipulate addressable LED strips that functions as an output from the inputs of the different sensors that we have and creating a fun and amazing concepts to how it would blink or like what colors to show.and also (2) the making the of the waterfall curtain that can also serve as a projection screen. We also attach an LED strip into the top of the curtain’s pipe to give out beautiful light reflections.

We hope our approach can attract people to see for themselves and spark the interest of the local people. Some might find it new and very intriguing, and at the same time we would also be letting them know what is happening in the environment with the use of the projection screen. This may convince them to get involved in making a difference and make the world a better place for generations to come.

Team Viz
Team Viz at work (Courtesy of Team Viz)
3D projection mechanism sketch
3D projection mechanism sketch (Courtesy of Team Viz)

Waterspace project

Week 2 of the Waterspace project (courtesy  of  Team Viz) 

The 3 projects have been initiated, (1) The water projection screen was mounted into the BOAT Lab using bamboo as the material, (2) The LED Strips were stapled on the BOAT Lab and (3) The fog machine was already built and so is the fog projection screen device.

PVC pipe (or water screen) installation
PVC pipe (or water screen) installation (courtesy  of  Team Viz)
Minimal problems were encountered in mounting the water projection screen. When mounted we observed that the BOAT Lab was not leveled properly, having the water flow only to one side. Our solution to that was to add another component in the PVC Pipe establishing another one in the middle, the intersection point between the current of the water was placed in the middle of the new established PVC pipe, distributing the water equally between two sides.

Although the water projection screen was okay, a lot of problems was again encountered in the fog machine. The unexpected thing was the ceramic around the heating element was broken due to excessive moisture from the fog. So we tried to figure out another alternative to prevent that but due to a small timeframe we just decided to buy another tea kettle. And just to be safe we bought two.

Week 2 of the Waterspace Project

May 7, 2016, Exhibition day for the Waterspace teams. There is a huge pressure on us (Team Viz) because we had to setup everything on the exhibition day. We started setting up our projects at around 9 am, and we have 10 hours to set everything up. On the last minute our fog machine broke but with Team Viz’s magic they fixed it right away. We made everything work on that day.

Before the end of May, our team coordinated with Dolf Andringa a marine biologist and we thought of expanding the community to get as many students involved since it would be the start of class soon, and since all of this is about learning to collaborate each and every one’s ideas. The Team Viz Initiative does not only mean visualizing all the creative ideas that comes to mind but to actually implement it. We do not only envision a community of greater and rich culture but we would also like to make that happen, and personally I plan to do so.

In regards with the projects, Team Viz has already initiated the Glowing Buoy project and we actually experimented in mixing the silicone with neodymium powder and applied it with an expendable styrofoam ball and waited for the night to see if it would work. After the experiment we concluded that though it still glows in the dark, due to its transparent attribute of the silicone and because of the neodymium powder doesn’t highlight it colorful property at day, it seems like it's just an ordinary styrofoam ball.

So we are planning to use acrylic paint or any paint that is not toxic and collaborate with artists to paint using the buoy as the canvas and afterwards apply glowing silicone to make it look awesome at night.

Glowing Buoy

Glowing Buoy experimentation (Courtesy  of  Team Viz)

Foundation University Precious Plastics Initiative (FUPPI) is a project based on the Precious Plastics program of Dave Hakkens. He has posted blueprints of a shredding machine, extrusion machine, compression machine, and an injection machine. The idea is that we can collect plastics and transform them into something; be it a pot, a top, a vase, a plate, or make it into a thread of plastic which you can manipulate into whatever you want. Foundation University, being national champions for best eco-friendly school in the Philippines, our team feels that this is a logical step forward. This is our small contribution to our school’s thrust in creating a cleaner, more livable community. The community in Banilad can benefit from this project because they will see how these machines are built and they can create something from an otherwise wasted material.

Blueprints of a shredding machine, extrusion machine, compression machine, and an injection machine

Blueprints of a shredding machine, extrusion machine, compression machine, and an injection machine (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

The Challenges

Having access to the blueprints made our team very excited, we were confident that we could build a shredder and an extrusion machine. We got what needed for building the framework from metal cut offs from the construction site in our north campus. Then came the question of the electric motor, shredding blades, and heating elements. It turns out that low RPM motors cost a lot of money… too much money for our budget. An alternative was to to get a 2-3 horsepower high speed motor and connect that to a reducer/converter to get it to turn at 40-60 RPM. This would cost us 1/3 of the price of a low speed motor. Then, we had to find suppliers for the blades and heating elements. As it turns out, there isn't one in Dumaguete. We had to find them in Manila or Cebu. Unfortunately, quotations took several days to come. We started to worry. At first we were afraid, we were petrified, thinking how we could ever build without blades and heating elements by our side. But then we spent so many moments thinking how it all went wrong, then Clint grew strong, and decided how to move along. So now we're back, we got quotes for the shredder and the heating elements. Only worry is if they can arrive in time for us to install and test before the big day in May 7.

The Fallback Plan

In case the blades, heating elements and motor will not arrive in time, we have two fallback plants. The first is we will make a plastic bottle stripper; this makes a long, narrow, strip of plastic from plastic bottles. The second fallback is to melt plastic bags and mix it with sand to make “bricks”. Plastic bags and sand are two things that are quite abundant.

“Bricks” made from Plastic bags and sand

“Bricks” made from Plastic bags and sand (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

So, May 7th has passed. All the groups were able to show their respective projects to the community and the guests. The great thing about that event was that we got to meet with people were interested in our project. There was a couple that was very glad that we were doing the Precious Plastics. They were glad to see this project because they are also planning to do a similar project. This was great for us because this means we can share experiences and learn from each other, especially from each other’s mistakes.

Now, let us go back to reality; back to our reality that we are still missing crucial components for our machines. First, the bad news; the parts for the shredder are expensive. We mentioned that already but as it turns out, it is even more expensive that what we originally thought. We are now looking for other sources of funds so we can get those parts. But, there is some good news; our heating elements are coming in this week. When (and if…fingers crossed) that arrives, we can assemble our extrusion machine and test it.

Barrels and Plungers

Barrels and Plungers (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)
Finally, our heating elements have arrived. Now what? As it turns out, the electrical part is a bit tricky. As a result of this mind boggling gadget, we have asked for help from one of our colleagues. We are waiting on him when he becomes available. In the meantime, we have made mock-ups of our barrel and plunger. A detail we missed earlier is that these pipes are welded. We need a smooth surface to the injection machine to work. Therefore, we have a guy going around the city to ask whether there is a shop that can smoothen the pipe out for us. We have also made arrangements with our metal working shop to lend us some tools. Things are starting to look up.

Heating Elements

Heating Elements (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)
Heating Elements
Heating Elements (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

Heating Elements

Heating Elements (Courtesy of the Team FUPPI community project members)
Before we talk about our Precious Plastics injection machine, I would like to share another project that a member of team FUPPI was involved in. It is called a bio-mechanical goat. The concept is simple, have a plastic barrel where you put biodegradable materials in, turn it, put some water, after a few weeks, you have compost. Well, a member of team FUPPI, Clint Absin, worked on a version which has a stationary bike attached to it. This way, you cycle to turn the barrels; you cycle to recycle… Catchy.
Bio-Mechanical Goat
Bio-Mechanical Goat (Courtesy of the Team FUPPI community project members)

Bio-Mechanical Goat

Bio-Mechanical Goat(Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)
Going back to our injection machine; it is taking shape, in fact, we lack a hopper and…. Well, that’s it basically.  However, we still have issues, as always. Our extrusion bit is too short, we are looking for a longer one to buy or to fabricate, whichever comes first. Another concern, our axle for our shredder, we are still waiting on the machine shops whether they will make one or if we have to buy it ourselves. If we have to buy it, good luck, we couldn’t find it in the city. We are looking once again, outside the island.
Making of Extrusion machine
Making of Extrusion machine, Compression machine, and an Injection machine (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

Making of Extrusion machine

Making of Extrusion machine, Compression machine, and an Injection machine (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

Making of Extrusion machine

Making of Extrusion machine, Compression machine, and an Injection machine (Courtesy of the FUPPI community project members)

ZERO1 and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs are pleased to announce the artists selected to participate in the 2016-17 American Arts Incubator (AAI), an international new media and digital arts exchange program developed by ZERO1 to support American artists and underserved populations working together to create impactful community-driven public art projects that address local social challenges. The accomplished hybrid artists and the locations chosen for this next exchange cycle are Elaine Cheung (Russia), Scott Kildall (Thailand), Michael Kuetemeyer (Cambodia), Nathan Ober (Colombia), and Balam Soto (Guatemala).

Each of the selected artists will lead a training workshop, production lab, and public exhibition addressing a social challenge during a month-long exchange to each country. Through AAI’s experience-based learning methodology, participants will engage in discussions, activities, and experiments around a social challenge of local importance. Small grants will be awarded to participant groups from the local community, creating new opportunities for collaborative innovation. By applying creative practices to social challenges, community participants will develop their own arts-based solutions to bolster local economies, influence public policy, and further social change.

The five American artists will act as cultural envoys, using artistic collaboration to foster new relationships built upon common social values and the collective exploration of differences. They will share their technological skills and aesthetic sensibilities with international creative explorers working in the burgeoning fields of social entrepreneurship and arts-based community engagement.

ZERO1 is proud to welcome this year’s AAI artists into our ever-expanding network of hybrid explorers in art, science, and technology. In the year to come, we will be working together to provoke and explore new ideas that build more inclusive, engaged, and vibrant communities around the world.

Meet the Artists

Elaine CheungElaine Cheung


Moscow, Russia

Elaine Miu Cheung works at the intersection of art, design, computing, and technology. Originally from Los Angeles, she explores themes relating to our embodiment of tech, future systems, and experiential interactions. As a Chinese-American, she bridges ideologies from Eastern and Western perspectives and practices, which feeds into her most recent work on the nature of consciousness through wearable technologies. In 2013, she completed her BFA at University of California, San Diego majoring in Interdisciplinary Computing and the Arts and has just completed an MFA in Media Design Practices from Art Center College of Design. Her work has been exhibited in San Diego, Los Angeles, and Grinnell, Iowa. Most recently, she traveled to Myanmar as a summer researcher and UX designer at Proximity Designs, developing strategies for brand identity and joining a collaborative research team exploring betel farms and the potential for technological and smart systems in rural farming.

Scott KildallScott Kildall


Bangkok, Thailand

Scott Kildall is a cross-disciplinary artist who writes algorithms that transform various datasets into 3D sculptures and installations. The resulting artworks often invite public participation through direct interaction. His work has been exhibited internationally at venues including the New York Hall of Science, Transmediale, the Venice Biennale and the San Jose Museum of Art. He has received fellowships, awards and residencies from organizations including Impakt Works, Autodesk, Recology San Francisco,, Eyebeam Art +Technology Center, Kala Art Institute and The Banff Centre for the Arts.

Michael KuetemeyerMichael Kuetemeyer


Phnom Penh, Cambodia

Michael Kuetemeyer is an award winning media artist and teacher of experimental and documentary media. He received his MFA from Temple University and BS from University of Wisconsin - Madison. He is a recipient of a Fulbright Scholar Award and a founder of Termite TV Collective. His work has been broadcast on PBS and screened at festivals and museums worldwide, including the Museum of Modern Art, the Flaherty Film Seminar & the Museum of Television and Radio, New York. As part of SPACES, a social practice artist residency funded by ArtPlace America, he is currently an Artist in Residence at the Village of Arts & Humanities in Philadelphia. He is committed to creating innovative, socially engaged participatory media art projects with communities. He was awarded a Mid Atlantic Arts Foundation, Artist and Communities Grant to conduct a youth filmmaking residency at the Reichhold Art Center in the U.S. Virgin Islands. Michael currently teaches in the Film & Media Arts department at Temple University.

Nathan OberNathan Ober



Nathaniel Ober is an artist whose work crosses disciplines from installation and performance, to video and sound. His interdisciplinary works examine concepts of human perception and natural phenomena. Nathaniel’s current research is focused on astronomy and astrophysics, which deal with techniques of sonification and processes that attempt to expose our innate connection with the universe. Nathaniel’s work has been exhibited nationally and internationally with over 40 solo and group shows. In 2009 he moved to New Delhi, India to serve as Program Director of Visual Communication and Interactive Media Design at Raffles Millennium International, later transferring to the Raffles Design Institute in Colombo, Sri Lanka. He is currently working as a hybrid artist and educator in the Bay Area. He earned a Master of Fine Arts from the Digital Arts and New Media program at the University of California, Santa Cruz, and a Bachelor of Fine Arts from the Columbus College of Art and Design.

Balam SotoBalam Soto


Guatemala City, Guatemala

Balam Soto creates contemporary, exploratory artworks that fuse low tech with high tech, including interactive art installations, public artworks and video. Balam works independently on the artistic and technical sides of his pieces. An award winning, internationally acclaimed new media artist, Balam has exhibited in fine art venues worldwide including: the AluCine Latin Media Festival in Toronto, Canada; World Maker Faire at the New York Hall of Science Museum in Queens, NY; El Museo del Barrio in Manhattan, NY; Gallery of Oi  Futuro in Brazil; Queens Museum of Art  in Queens, NY; Everhart Museum of Natural History, Science & Art in Scranton,  PA; the Centre Cultural in Brussels, Belgium; the National Library of Cameroon in  West Africa; and the Art and Technology Corridor at the Three Rivers Arts Festival  in Pittsburgh, PA among numerous others. Balam has received four Editor’s Choice awards from the World Maker Faire held at the New York Hall of Science Museum in 2010, 2012 and 2014. Balam is the owner of Balam Soto Studio and co-owner of Open Wire Lab, both located in Hartford, Connecticut.

Balloon mapping, using a tethered red weather balloon with a small time lapse camera attached, was a great way to meet curious walkers along the water’s edge. It was also an amazing way to explore and document areas along Dunedin’s coastline that are vulnerable to sea level rise. Thanks to the toolkit from Public Lab, helium from the Otago Museum, and an unusually sunny day, we documented 7 coastal locations.

Mapping St Clair

Mapping St. Clair, NZ. Photos courtesy of the artists.

Sawyers Bay

Mapping Sawyers Bay, NZ. Photos courtesy of the artists.

Port Chalmers

Mapping Port Chalmers, NZ. Photos courtesy of the artists.

The ZERO1 New Zealand Arts Incubator program was a rare opportunity to learn and explore climate change issues on the South Island of New Zealand with amazing community partners and participants. Many of the ecological challenges facing the South Island, such as sea level rise, rivers polluted by industry, drought, a warming ocean, ocean acidification, and endangered animals, are issues shared across the globe.

Next Steps

The local New Zealand incubator participant artists are working on prototype 2 of their projects to be featured at Dunedin’s Vogel Street Party and the Art and Futures conference at the Dunedin School of Art this October. We are looking forward to seeing these great projects evolve and create more community dialog about art, climate change and resiliency planning in New Zealand.

The Climate Kit exhibition is planning a show in collaboration with the California College of Art and the University of California at Davis in the future. We will be launching our global project submissions on the website soon.

Hear more about Climate Kit on the radio!

Climate Kit Field Tools of the AnthropoceneClimate Kit

The public is invited into the Climate Kit exhibition. Photos courtesy of the artists.

The Climate Kit: Field Tools from the Anthropocene exhibition at the Otago Museum was a big success with a great turn out on opening night, despite the morning ice storm. Check out this interview we gave during the final hours of the installation process with 39 Dunedin TV.

Custom Tables and Banners

Climate Kit custom tables and banners. Photos courtesy of the artists.

The Living Map

Bridie Lonie, Luke Easterbrook, Beth Ferguson, Sara Dean

Living Map

Images of The Living Map. Photos courtesy of the artists.

The Living Map adds three-dimensionality to the projections often used in modeling the effects of climate change. Historical, present and future geological projections provide important data for the resiliency planning regarding coastal sea level inundation. The digital map layers are from Surging Seas, the Dunedin City Council, the Otago Regional Council, and the National Library. This project was led by Bridie Lonie from the Dunedin School of Art along with Sara Dean and Beth Ferguson from the ZERO1 New Zealand Arts Incubator with the help of Luke Easterbrook from the University of Otago, the Otago Museum, and Workspace and Andrew Early at Otago Polytechnic.

Dunedin Youth Map

Karen Parker, Jen Smith, Tahuna Normal Intermediate School 7th grade class

Youth Map

Images of the Dunedin Youth Map. Photos courtesy of the artists.

The Dunedin Youth Map was led by 7th grade teacher, Karen Parker, of the Tahuna Normal Intermediate School. She developed civic icons with her students and then created a community participatory map for the Otago Museum Climate Kit exhibition. The public was invited to interact using a combination of the icons, emoji, and eco icons from the Green Map System. Karen’s 7th grade class joined us for a day of balloon mapping to document their sports field, a site that is vulnerable to flooding due to saltwater inundation with sea levels rising on the coast of South Dunedin. The class plans to continue to develop the Dunedin Youth Map project this year.

Stones and Bones: A Geological and Paleontological look at New Zealand

Amy Smith, Katherina Marino, Rebecca John

Stones and Bones

Images from Stones and Bones. Images courtesy of the artists.

Most people do not think about climate change on a geological scale. The Stones and Bones exhibit is meant to show visitors that the rocks and fossils beneath our feet tell a story. We can learn about paleoclimates and see how vastly different our surroundings used to be. The Stones and Bones project shows a rock core columns and a panel engaging geological history and human engagement with rocks and fossils, with particular emphasis around the Otago region.

Shedding Some Light: Dunedin’s Dark Skies Initiative

Emma Hanisch, Conor Feehly, Ravitesh Ratnam, Colin Smillie

Shedding Some Light

Images from Shedding Some Light. Photos courtesy of the artists.

This project relates to the Dark Skies Initiative proposed by the Dunedin City Council. They are considering the implementation of shielded LED street lighting to replace the current sodium models. While this is a council vote, the public is involved in the decision-making process. Therefore, our aim was to create an exhibit which will initiate interest in light pollution and solutions. We provided information on the different options the council are considering along with examples of lighting solutions currently being implemented across the globe. Elements of the exhibit include information panels on doors covering many different topics related to the Dark Skies Initiative, and a box containing alternate street light models and images of the night sky from Dunedin.

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