Dust is a pervasive material substance consisting of solid particles, when emitted through human activities, causes unprecedented effects on the Earth's energy balance. Anthropogenic actions produce different types of aerosols, ranging from fossil fuel emissions for heat, electricity and transportation, to the expansion of agricultural practices enhancing the proliferation of dust. The anthropocene has made the Earth twice as dustier now since industrialisation processes, causing air pollution and extreme weather events across the globe.


The idea that human emitted aerosols can significantly alter the weather has been recorded throughout centuries. Yet it was through the advancement of scientific instruments, in particular, remote-sensing technologies, which enabled the detection of aerosol forming processes to understand the anthropogenic impact on Earth system. Remote-sensing technologies such as terrestrial scanning uses a laser beam with a spot-dimension less than that of a radius of a dust particle to quantise its target into a high precision point-cloud model. This project explores 'dust' as the material signature of the anthropocene, using terrestrial scanning to capture a dust saturated Earth, encapsulated in a 3D printed face mask and moving image. The moving image provides a speculative site for conceptualising the human body as a geological force par-excellence.


Two design explorations take place:


A. Pazuzu's Mask (3D-printed face mask)

Pazuzu's Mask presents dust in a series of computational design experiments encompassing algorithmic design morphologies, diagrammatic explorations, algorithmic animations, digital fabrication and material explorations to generate a 3D-printed face mask, extrapolated from a point-cloud scan of the researcher’s face.


B. Dust Enforcer (Point-cloud moving image)

Dust Enforcer is a collaboration with Asad Khan, from the Edinburgh School of Architecture and Landscape Architecture. It presents a post-cinematic remote-sensed moving image, constructed through the choreographic capture of the my body, where minute limbic gestures move billows of dust. The design process includes point-cloud data visualisations, design diagrams and a video documentation of the choreographic process.