Nature AS Data

A modern collective and virtual studio exploring scientific concepts through an artistic lens. Working at the collision of art, science, technology, sound and music.

We artistically explore and examine the environment around us.

Our goal is to reflect science data in an emotional and engaging way. A sense of environmental and social connection is a guiding principle in our work.

Nature as Data was established in 2020 by James McGrath (Visual artist) and Gary Sinclair

(Composer/Sound designer).

James McGrath

James McGrath graduated architecture (1994) and lectured digital-visualization at UNSW. Over the last 10 years his paintings have exhibited internationally. He trained as a painter assisting Patrick Betaudier (Paris) and Arthur Boyd (Australia). His work is motivated by the differences and tensions in the marriage of painting and 3D video.

Gary Sinclair

Gary Sinclair is a music composer and sound designer. Currently working in public art, experiential projects and science storytelling.

Exploring the spaces between music, sound design, art and science.


Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network.

Australia’s land ecosystem observatory

TERN collects environmental data and samples from around Australia by doing field surveys, using remote-sensing technologies such as drones and satellites, and by monitoring specific sites across the country in great detail. TERN shares these data to enable Australia’s world-leading research on climate change, biodiversity, water and soil.


Associate Professor KIM CALDERS

Professor of Earth Observation & Terrestrial Ecology at Ghent University.

Lidar Guru.

Ghost Trees

Ghost Trees is an evolving audiovisual digital artwork,

combining science, environment, innovation and art.

Created by visualising and sonifying big data-sets provided by TERN (Terrestrial Ecosystem Research Network). Ghost Trees brings to life the endangered Rushworth Forest, (Victoria, Australia) in the lands of the Ngurai-illam-wurrung people.

These datasets are ephemeral yet fixed recordings of dying ecosystems; digital memories of disappearing landscapes, echoes of our lost environment.

LIDAR scans take the viewpoint of someone within the landscape and from within the limbs of the trees - we become part of the organism.

Eco acoustic site recordings are studied and processed to reveal the inherent musicality of the forest and its inhabitants.

Melodic phrases are generated from the trees spatial data points - the forest is singing.

Ghost Trees

2022: Selected for The Digital Arts Program. The Lume Melbourne. Victoria. Australia.

2022: Finalist. Waterhouse Natural Science Art Prize. South Australian Museum, Adelaide. SA. Australia.

2021: Finalist. Northern Beaches Art and Design Prize. Manly, Sydney. NSW. Australia

2021: Luna Fete Festival. New Orleans. Louisiana. USA.

2021: Detroit Institute of Art. Dlectricity Festival. Detroit. Michigan. USA.

2020 : 1.5 degrees exhibition, Forty Five Downstairs gallery, Melbourne. Victoria, Australia.

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