The Kuramoto Model (1000 Fireflies)
The Kuramoto Model is a public art event. Organizers recruit cyclists and deploy masses of custom bike lights containing radio devices that communicate and synchronize blinks with one another.
This is a community-based public art project that uses custom-made bike lights to create an interactive event on the scale of a city. LED lights designed and made by Chicago-based artist David Rueter are outfitted with electronics that allow them to communicate with others of their kind and automatically synchronize their blinks, forming a self-organizing system. Individually, these devices appear similar to conventional cycling safety lights, but in groups, they exhibit an immediately noticeable and striking phenomenon of unified flashing.
This September, the project received an Honorary Mention in Interactive Art for the Prix Ars Electronica in Linz, Austria. In 2012, NorthernLights.mn presented The Kuramoto Model in Minneapolis as part of the Northern Spark all-night arts festival.