This Spooky Cauldron of Green Goo Knows What You're Thinking
Brainwaves are a powerful thing. Harnessed correctly, your mind can paint, pass a ball around, and even make music. For his latest project, artist Dmitry Morozov decided to put these seemingly-psychic abilities to use.
Called "Solaris," this project is inspired by Stanislaw Lem's novel of the same name. In the book, astronauts attempt to probe a large creature surrounded by an ocean. The alien, feeling threatened, reads the thoughts of its visitors and materializes people from their past to torment them. This version of Solaris is much more docile, reading the thoughts of the participants and reacting with lava lamp-esque movements.
In order to get things moving, participants must wear a Emotiv EEG headset, which reads brainwaves and activates magnets hidden under the green pool. The ferrofluid within reacts to brainwave-charged magnets and moves around like a living Rorschach test. Users can enter into a dialog with the ooze; using neural energy, the fluid can be willed to swim around the pool and change shape. People who have experienced the creation firsthand swear it's actually alive.
Just like the beast from Solaris, this creation takes your thoughts and feelings and turns them into something tangible. Interestingly, the personality and mood of each participant directly impacts the shapes Solaris creates. “Different emotions and activities have similar patterns in similar states, of course, but it’s a bit different by different participants,” said Morozov.