Discover the ‘Secrets of Soil’ #ArtTuesday

The difference between dirt and soil is that soil is nutrient-rich enough to grow things. But what does nutrient-rich mean? Secrets of Soil is an interactive game that lets the user navigate through a 3D environment that depicts the very kind of soil needed for farming. And it’s beautiful. Here’s more from MOTHERBOARD:

Secrets of Soil is the brainchild of UK-based digital artist Henry Driver. He was inspired to create the interactive piece by his family’s attempts to make their farming practices carbon negative. But this isn’t just a dry investigation into the clumpy brown stuff beneath our feet. Driver renders soil as a spectacular underground cosmos filled with glittering bacteria, colossal fungal networks, and pulsating proteins. Thanks to his own electronic soundtrack, Secrets of Soil bears more than a passing resemblance to the life-affirming psychedelia of Tetsuya Mizuguchi’s classic Rez: Infinite. It’s everything I wish my educational software at school could have been.

I should mention that in order to get the most out of it, you’re going to need a pretty beefy gaming rig (which is kind of a shame bearing in mind the game’s climate convictions and how environmentally unfriendly such machines are). Still, I’m into it otherwise. Across roughly thirty minutes, you explore seventeen scenes of microscopic wonder accompanied by the narration of Lynsey Murrel who tells us, amongst many other nuggets of information, how earthworms keep soil healthy by shredding organic matter, allowing it to breathe, drain and retain nutrients. I had no idea the humble invertebrate was so important.

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