Digital Phyllotaxy was designed for Hankook Tire’s new headquarters in Pangyo, Seoul. The new Technoplex, designed by Foster + Partners, reflects Hankook’s development as a global brand, echoing the excellence in engineering that the company represents. When approached to explore ideas for art within the building, Jason Bruges Studio imagined a series of spatial interventions to evoke Hankook Tire’s dynamic culture of innovation, creativity and craftsmanship.

Deriving its name from the arrangement of leaves on a stem, Digital Phyllotaxy is a physical metaphor for a tree. 16 metres in diameter, the artwork is inspired by the vertical journey through the building and explores the idea of split-level experiences. As people ascend through the vast architectural ‘oculus’ they witness the dappled light below, within and above the canopy. Leaves digitally rustle and change colour with the seasons transforming the journey on the escalator into an encounter with nature.

With a bespoke media assembly, Digital Phyllotaxy uses technology to bring an essence of the natural world inside the building. Layered edge-lit LED units and liquid crystal shutters create delicate volumes of illumination and obscuration representing the way light filters through leaves. A palette of live inputs including movement, sun paths and wind speeds, trigger generative colours and textures that feel fresh and alive. Entering the building is like walking through a forest.

Illustrating the intricate coexistence of nature, modern art and technology, Digital Phyllotaxy aims to create a workplace that is restorative and supports people’s wellbeing. Bringing a dynamic interplay of artificial and natural light deep into the heart of the building, it generates visual connections across different floors encouraging staff interaction. Updating in real-time the installation appears, ‘living’. The result is an everchanging arboreal world that welcomes people into the building.

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