|Exhibition:||John Harris - "As If I Were A Traveller . . . ."|
"This took the concept of the mushroom as its basic structure, using the 'dome' as a means of collecting light for its energy. This is a very different kind of environment from Pyrrhus. Hot and dry, reminiscent of Rajasthan, this does not seem promising for such fungi-based growth. But very high levels of melanin, and similar characteristics of terricolous fungi proved to be very successful."
40 x 48 inches
Oils on stretched canvas
"Constraints of space, raw materials and, most importantly, availability of sustainable, 'green' energy, have led scientists to develop genetically modified plant-life, to create living architectural structures, which are grown, rather than 'built'.
Providing all the power the inhabitants need, through a modification of photosynthesis, the forms which these 'buildings' take are as varied as the plants of the natural world. The science of leaf growth (phyllotaxis) adapting to environmental pressures (availability of sunlight etc.) dictates the structures to a large degree, though space, local weather systems and social considerations (including aesthetics) all have a part to play. Hence the 'phyllotactic experiment'."
This discipline, based on the science of leaf growth on our home planet coupled with GM technology and advances in photosynthesis, found its real flowering (literally) on Pyrrhus. Here, the meagre amount of light available, forced the science into new ways of delivering power through organic photoelectric tissue. The ensuing development was so successful, that these grown architectural structures were capable of generating enough electricity to power small towns, just from starlight."
"The result was these twin grown structures, and a most unexpected and welcome side effect of these greenest of 'buildings' was discovered. The cause of this effect was, and remains unknown, but it was noticed that the psychology of people spending time in the buildings became peculiarly receptive and capable of absorbing large amounts of information. In addition, and perhaps more telling, a sense of 'belonging', of willingness to co-operate, was reported, which perfectly suited the needs of disputing parties to negotiate agreements The site became synonymous with successfully concluded settlements, so much so that the old phrase of a Pyrrhic victory was eventually superseded by the concept of a Pyrrhic solution, an outcome in which disputing parties both achieved enough of their goals, to leave for home, feeling they had got what they wanted."
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