Emergent Behavior started more or less with the notion of making and photographing an installation made from stuff I found on the ground. I envisioned a sculpture that would be of the place, yet be utterly, hilariously incongruous at the same time. So I gathered up a bunch of shattered shipping pallets on a street in Brooklyn, made a sculpture from them, and then photographed it in the same location. After that, I moved on to leaves, then cheese balls, then cups and plates and beyond.
It wasn’t until I’d made the third or fourth image in the series that it dawned on me that I was making swarms. With that realization in hand, I had all manner of natural organizational systems to look to for inspiration (schooling fish, murmuring birds, etc.). From there, the series coalesced quickly.