Mushroom Network

by Deco Star

hug, warm, relax

Project Description

Our team's project, "Mushroom Network," consists of a large central mushroom surrounded by several smaller ones, all connected by glowing light strips. This setup represents the symbiotic relationship between human community dynamics and mushroom ecosystems. The "Mushroom Network" is designed to help urban residents who face significant stress and a sense of isolation by providing a quick, accessible way to engage with a simulated natural environment for stress relief.

Two main goals:
  • Access to Nature: It offers a practical solution for city dwellers who find it difficult to connect with the natural world, helping them take a break from urban life to relax and refresh.
  • Feeling of Community: By mirroring the interconnections found in nature, the installation helps users feel part of a larger community, reducing feelings of loneliness and promoting a sense of belonging.

  • "Mushroom Network" encourages people to step into a space where they can unwind and feel supported, enhancing their mental health and overall mood.

    Expected experience:

    In our "Mushroom Network" installation, the interactive journey starts when a user stands in front of the large mushroom, activating the entire system. Initially, when no one is near, the mushrooms emit a soft, inviting glow to attract users. As a user approaches, the lights intensify, and soothing sounds of a breeze rustling through leaves are triggered to enhance the ambience.

    Engagement with the large mushroom deepens the experience. Speaking to it causes the illumination to brighten dramatically, creating a more immersive environment. For a more comforting interaction, hugging the large mushroom activates its heating feature, warming the user with a gentle heat.

    Surrounding the large mushroom, several smaller mushrooms play a key role. These mushrooms will activate when a user is standing in front of them, playing a variety of natural sounds such as flowing water, bird calls and insect chirping, creating a unique auditory landscape for each visitor. Additionally, patting a small mushroom sends a beam of light from it to the large mushroom, visually symbolising the network's interconnectedness.

    Technical Description

    Physical form:

    It consists of a large mushroom standing in the centre , surrounded by three small mushrooms. A set of light strips is wrapped around the lower edge of the big mushroom's pileus . There are light strips connecting the big mushroom and the small mushroom. All mushrooms have built-in speakers. A hugging area made of pillows and a heating plate is placed on the stem of the large mushroom.

    Technology hardware:

    The big mushroom: made of PVC pipes, tapes, expanding foam fill, wire mesh, iron wires, cable ties, pillows, heating plates, LED light strips, Diffusion film, ultrasonic sensors, a temperature sensor, a microphone, a speaker, pressure sensors, an Arduino board.

    Three small mushrooms: a mushroom body made of 3D printing, LED light strips, a pressure sensor, an ultrasonic sensor, a speaker, an Arduino board, and a Raspberry Pi board.


    Our project employed several software tools tailored to meet the diverse needs of the installation:

    Arduino IDE: Used for programming the Arduino boards that control various components of the installation.

    Python: This language was used to script control functionalities on the Raspberry Pi, especially for triggering sound playback.

    Fusion 360: Employed for designing the detailed 3D models of the small mushrooms, ensuring accuracy and feasibility before production.

    Bambu Studio: Utilized for 3D printing the small mushrooms, enabling us to transform our digital models into tangible, precise physical objects.