Beeswax Wall

Raleigh, USA - 2002

The digital and physical 'Sustainability Knowroom' for the EPA started with a desire to design an experience that embodied an alternative model of a user; a feel-good role model that empowers the user to take action in and for the environment, rather than a pessimistic model that leaves visitors scared and culpable. To engage the user on a multi-sensory level, we designed a 11'x22' bees-wax wall into which various input and output devices are embedded, including touch screens, webcams, object scanners, and microphones. The beeswax contains playful learning activities and “games” about what everyone can do in everyday life for the environment. As multiple visitors interact with the interfaces, the information projected onto the bees-wax start to swirl around, at a speed corresponding to the number of visitors, making the bees-wax become visually liquid. The bees-wax epitomizes an ecological system that comes alive through collective action and care.