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“Electrum” by Eric Orr

electrum.jpgWhen most people think of electricity, they simply see it as a way to power everything.  Some people also see it as as dangerous and almost uncontrollable in its raw form outside of conductors or wiring.  Artist, Eric Orr, used technology previously invented by scientist Nikola Tesla.  Nikola introduced the Tesla reactor to explore electricity and alternating current.  Little did he know, he would open the door for huge inventions like home light bulbs.  Eric Orr did not invent the Tesla reactor, just took on a different aspect of the original.  Orr used his reactor to make large somewhat controllable lightning bolts that can be used as visualizations and even to make music. When asked what were some of the ideas behind his work Orr said,”‘The most widely held misconception about Light and Space art is that it involves things; in its purest form, it’s completely intangible and exists only in the sensate mind,”  So Eric wanted to explore this idea and try to find a way to sort of control light and electricity.  To do this, he contructed a massive Tesla tower that can make lightning bolts over 50ft long.  Below I have attached a video of Tesla reactors being used to create music. 

[1] “‘Eric Orr’s ‘Electrum’: Call It Heavy Mettle” by Kristine McKenna