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Dan Tapper

Hyper Nebulas

Hyper Nebula was inspired by watching a nature documentary on the activities of sand crab interaction. I found the patterns created by 1000s of sand crabs feeding throughout the course of the day to be very beautiful and have interesting emergent properties. I developed a system to simulate these sand crab patterns – through the interaction of the sand crabs seeking food and evading predators. I found that by tweaking the system in various ways such as imposing geometrical patterns to the crabs starting points or linking traveling crabs and predators using colored lines created a series of very interesting patterns and images reminiscent of nebulas and galaxies. Hyper Nebulas are a series of images inspired by natural processes occurring at a micro level and abstracted to hint at the macro – cosmology from sand crabs.

The art is rendered in panels up to 8 x 4ft. with 2.5 millions stringlets, or displayed as simple, short animations. (Works currently exhibited in the Art | Sci Center: “Quantum Metaphors” at the UCLA California NanoSystems Institute).

Media Used: Created as generative work using Processing


Dan Tapper is an artist and creative technologist, specializing in sound art, interactivity and new media.

Tapper’s work explores the intersections between art, science, and technology, creating unique and immersive experiences. By combining elements from a number of different practices Dan seeks to create objects that allow sensory augmentation, platforms for open education and spaces that inspire wonder.

http://visualcodepoems.tumblr.com/