microbial mat, PIANO
A Microbial mat is a multi-layered sheet of diverse species of microorganisms that feed on nutrients from their surroundings and from each other's residues. The color of each layer of a microbial mat indicates the compounds on which each species feeds and that which it expels. Inspired by the mats found in the Cuatrociénegas biosphere reserve, this installation of colored sand blends the layered strata of microbes with the vibrant patterns of the traditional sarapes from the state of Coahuila. The Piano that rests on the mat is an ambiguous cultural artifact, part seashell, part musical instrument, part weathered stone, a geological find that speaks of our need to make sense of the debris of history.