Jordan Backhus

The Fungus Among Us: Progress & Proposal

Final Project Proposal

Out of human sight, there exists an immeasurable, age-old community of intelligent life that helps support and replenish human existence and Earth’s natural resources. In an attempt to give a “voice” to this overlooked (and underrated) kingdom, Joao and I would like to record the growth of these microorganisms in our own ecological environment. The acoustics will corroborate the presence of this inconspicuous domain, which is otherwise left unheard. Through plexiglass, the user can watch our organisms grow over time; through a speaker, the user can hear the growth of our organisms in realtime.

Joao and I will interview / consult with expert David Dunn, who specializes in the recording of ecological environments on a microscopic level. Specifically, Mr. Dunn creates composite aural portraits of the acoustic world inside trees. By listening to sounds of growth over time, he can more distinctly identify behavioral changes in ecological environments. His soundtrack, “The Sound of Light in Trees,” is such a recording inside a hollowed pinyon pine.

His response is pending.

For reference:

Basic Bill of Materials (thus far):

1. Plexiglass Container w/ substrate / mycological growth


2. Speaker / amplifier connected via guitar wire


3. Contact Microphone(s) and/or Piezo Disc(s)



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