H2Data (2017) is an interactive installation proposed to the FAD 2017 exhibition. It invite us to reflect on the importance of personal data in today’s digital economy. In an era in which the majority of the services are “free”, who pays the price? The installation unravels the question by means of a robotic flower that requires not water, but data to thrive. The mechanical stem stands for the technological advances of the internet, which in turn support the appealing applications represented by the flower itself. Attracted by the beautiful flower, we have no choice other than to turn over our data and money to feed it.
The installation draws an analogy between the reproductive strategy of flowering plants on the natural ecosystem and the artifices used by internet companies to acquire users. The installation asks users to swipe their cards to make the flower revive again. Most cards contain a considerable amount of personal information which is then use to nourish the plant/machine. That will make the flower strengthen and move back for an upwards position.