“35 Hz” at W.A.V.E.S. 2016

Last month I was asked if I had any ideas for an illuminated art piece to temporarily install in the sculpture garden. I had no ideas, so I declined. A week later I submitted an idea and with the help of Sarah from Windsor’s HackForge, I was able to get some grant money to make it.

Lots of Bike Lights!

The design required 100 rear flashing bicycle lights. They were supplied ‘at cost’ by local bike shop City Cyclery and it took almost 3 hours to open each package and install the batteries. My idea was to attach the lights onto the riverfront fence in a sine wave pattern that accurately represented the wave length of a 35 Hz sound. The frequency was chosen because it was the same as the “Mysterious hum that is supposedly originating from Detroit’s Zug Island” (More Info).

Lots of rain!

I installed the sculpture during record rainfall that flooded the city. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to prepare a spreadsheet that would outline each light’s location on the fence, so I had to use a tape measure and calculator. I got pretty fast at using the SIN() button, but the installation did take over 3 hours.

Less Dead Cyclists!

Now that the sculpture has been taken down and an art grant paid for 100 bicycle lights, we will be donating all of the lights to places that can properly distribute these lights to cyclists who need them. I’m sure it’s not just a Windsor problem, but there are a lot of folks on bicycles at night that have no lights. Having recently started driving, I found it very startling the first time I came across a bicyclist on the road at night without lights. Hopefully these lights find their way onto the seatposts of some of these bicycles.