Founded in 2018 by Chiaochi Chou and Youyang Hu, Synphysica stands at the forefront of artistic innovation, merging bio-hybrid media with large-scale installations. From the beginning of their collaboration, they harnessed their unique cultural narratives to craft immersive experiences driven by biological signals from diverse organisms, delving into the entanglement between humanity and the natural world. During the COVID-19 pandemic, isolated in their lives, the duo reevaluated the impact of technology on ecological evolution, thereby shifting their focus towards exploring the essence of matter and life, aiming to decenter the anthropocentric perspective. Thus, their creative domain shifted from indoor exhibition spaces to natural scenes, employing sensors for detection, analysis, and representation not confined to human experiences but as habitats co-constructed by living and non-living entities. This established the team's research and creative efforts as parallel processes and showcased the ontological world they envisioned.
Chiaochi Chou is an artist, researcher, and entrepreneur, skilled in creating installation art with living organisms and hybrid materials. She excels in planning and organizing the team's exhibition activities. Born in a mountain village in Taiwan, her long-term focus on ecological conservation stems from her family's background in plant science.
During her undergraduate studies at Shih Chien University (2014-2019), she integrated living plants into her creation and invited Youyang Hu to establish the Synphysica team. This interdisciplinary work deepened her interest in life sciences, leading her to pursue a master's degree at Tsing Hua University in 2019. Under the guidance of Professor Chia-Wei Li, she proposed the concept of the "Biological Internet of Things" in her thesis, leveraging the characteristic of biological signals to transcend the physical boundaries of nature. Continuing her PhD studies (2020-), she has led several representative exhibitions, such as "草木一見" at the National Museum of Natural Science in Taiwan and "霧地" at the Museum of Drinking Water in Taipei. These experiences have further allowed her to contribute to the discourse on techno-ecological views, guiding the simultaneous development of her creative and research work.
She is currently a member of the Li Chia-Wei Laboratory at Tsing Hua University and has been a resident in NYC as a 2023 fellow of the Asian Cultural Council Taiwan Foundation. She was also a founding laboratory member of the Institute of Digital Sciences Austria x Ars Electronica Center.
Youyang Hu, born in Wuhan, is an artist, and Ph.D. researcher at The University of Tokyo. He dedicated himself to the fields of bioengineering, artificial intelligence, and human-computer interaction, conducting biohybrid experimental creations, and using the calculable and augmented aspects of life as tentacles to redefine the relationship between life and nature.
During his undergraduate studies at Shih Chien University (2014-2018), he engaged in interactive installation creation and programming, sparking his interest in the digitization and algorithmic processing of biological data. Upon entering the Graduate Institute of Network and Multimedia at National Taiwan University (2018-2021), this interest propelled him to explore various dimensions, including the computational perception of humans and non-human species in both virtual and physical realms. This exploration was further intensified during his independent research period in Wuhan amidst the COVID-19 quarantine (2020-2022). Simultaneously, he participated remotely in all the team's exhibitions and took on the primary research and development work. This not only made him an excellent practitioner but also a dedicated researcher with a long-term vision. His research have been presented at international conferences, including ACMMM, ISEA, SIGGRAPH, and CHI.
Since 2022, he has been pursuing a Ph.D. at the University of Tokyo. Currently, as a member of the Yasuaki Kakehi Laboratory, he continues to push the boundaries of research and creativity, crafting novel paradigms in the more-than-human framework.
Solo / Permanent Exhibitions
Fleur de Chine, Nantou -Cradle .Aug 2023
Project Fulfill Art Space, Taipei -Lighthesis .Oct 2022
Museum of Natural Science, Taichung -草木一見 .Mar 2021
Songshan Cultural Park, Taipei -信釋 .Oct 2020
Project Fulfill Art Space, Taipei -信釋 .Sep 2020
Group Exhibitions / Performance
Ars Electronica Center, Linz -Streams in the Veins .Jan 2024
Ars Electronica Festival, Linz -Synplant .Sep 2023
Project Fullfill Art Space, Taipei -The Rat .Jan 2023
Xlab Showcase 2023, Tokyo -Synplant .Mar 2023
ZOU-NO-HANA Futurescape, Tokyo -Synplant .Dec 2022
Art TAIPEI 2022, Taipei -LightFall & Pneuma .Oct 2022
Stone Sculpture Museum, Hualien -Cradle .Oct 2022
National Taiwan Museum of Fine Arts, Taichung -Pneuma .Oct 2021
Museum of Drinking Water, Taipei -Movement .Oct 2021
Ars Electronica Festival, Linz -Cradle .Sep 2021
Remedium-Poznan Art Week, Poland -Syn-thesasia .Oct 2020
HOW Art Museum, Shanghai -Cybernation .Feb 2020
Ars Electronica Festival, Linz -Cybernation .Sep 2019
YouFab Global Creative Award, Japan -Cybernation .Jan 2019
Unstable Media Art Festival, Taipei -Meditation .Jan 2019
Taipei Digital Arts Festival, Taipei -Syn-thesasia .Nov 2018
MANA LIFE GEEK, Shanghai -Syn-thesasia .Oct 2018
Maker Faire, Taipei -Response Traces .Jul 2017
Bio Art & Design Award (BAD)
-Match Event .Apr 2023
Bio Art & Design Award (BAD)
-Match Event .Apr 2022
ACM Multimedia (ACMMM)
-Best Student Paper Award .Sep 2021
Taipei Arts Award
-Finalist .Dec 2020
YouFab Global Creative Awards
-Finalist .Dec 2018
K.T. Technology and Humanities Award
-Silver Awards .Nov 2018
MANA LIFE GEEK
-Data visualization Awards .Nov 2018
K.T. Technology and Humanities Award
-Silver Awards .May 2017
Synplant: Cymatics Visualization of Plant-Environment Interaction Based on Plants Biosignals
-SIGGRAPH Art Paper .Aug 2023
Lucid Dream: Sensing and Artistic Representation of Plant-Nature Interaction Based on Plants Biosignals
-Inter-Society for the Electronic Arts (ISEA) Short Paper .May 2023
aBio: Active Bi-Olfactory Display Using Subwoofers for Virtual Reality
-ACM Multimedia (ACMMM) Oral Paper .Oct 2021
Apercevoir: Bio Internet of Things Interactive System
-ACM Multimedia (ACMMM) Interactive Arts .Oct 2021
The Transition and Practice of Subjectivity: Interactive Art Driven by Biosignals
-Leonardo / ISAST .Sep 2021