The pieces are first inspired by my fascination with cordyceps, a fungal parasite that attacks arthropods. Once infected, the fungus slowly takes control of the insect both mentally and physically. Before the insect dies, the fungus makes it climb high onto a branch and grip on, giving it an advantageous place to spread spores. Once the insect is dead, the cordyceps protrudes out, breaking through the exoskeleton. There are many species of cordyceps varying in size, shape an color. Most of these only attack one species of arthropod.
The large piece was created on a Makerbot Replicator 2 with live moss and the smaller head piece was made by Shapeways in white strong and flexible.
More photos available here.
Read more about the process on my ITP blog!
See the model on Shapeways!
Featured on NOTCOT, Creators Project, AnimalNY, Wired.co.uk, Wired Taiwan, PSFK and Adafruit!