The Electromagnetic Fountain

Archive for the ‘1 Maxwell City’ Category

Sofia’s thoughts on Maxwell City

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Here’s a link to Sofia’s blog where she tries to make sense of what’s going down at the Maxwell City workshop:


Written by ajsteggell

June 1, 2007 at 9:05 pm

Maxwell City notes and images

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Here are some examples of activities with antennas in the Maxwell City workshop:

Some images from HC Gilje
Field trips and more (day 1-3 set)

Day 4, image 1: rendering sniffer data

Day 4, image 2: testing a light sensor

Day 4, image 3: rendering sniffer data

Image from Sofia
Does water affect the magnetic field of a plant?

Written by ajsteggell

June 1, 2007 at 9:30 am

EM Urban Fountain – all things in flux

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Urban art idea

I’m thinking about a fountain with water valves controlled by magnet solenoids that open and shut to control various pressures of coloured water streams according to electromagnetic activity, with ambient light and sound controlled by nature’s own magnetic fields, modulated by interventions of human-made fields – all things in flux.

Around the fountain are comfortable seats. You can sit by the fountain when you make a call on your mobile phone – watch, listen, feel humidity, airflows, relax. (Here I’m thinking about the strange way people’s eyes move when they make phone calls with mobs – eyes fluttering around, as if taking in the immediate surroundings. Sometimes settling on something, someone – eyes seem to focus, but then looking straight through, as if scanning for another point to fix on.)

For those with high electromagnetic sensitivity (EMS) it could indicate good and bad times.

But how do you build a fountain? Some examples I’ve found are listed below.

Time fountain by Nate True
This is interesting – a time fountain kit where a combination of fluorescent liquid and strobe lighting is used to make it seem as if the flow of water changes direction (time in flux)

The time fountain:

Cybernetic fountain
And here is a patent claim for a cybernetic fountain (inventor: Emilio C. Alba):

Parker Hannifin Musical Fountain
[ …. A joint effort of Atlantic Fountains and Downing Exhibits of Copley Ohio, the fountain uses over 350 feet of Parflex tubing and hundreds of Parker Fluid Connector and Skinner Valve components. The 6ft pool has 30 nozzles & color lights driven by a PC, three octave MIDI keyboard or drum pad …..]

Instructions for how to build a musical water fountian:

Written by ajsteggell

May 18, 2007 at 12:54 pm

Protective/morphing clothing idea

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Thinking about a previous post about protective placebo pants and knickers by Dunne and Raby (that also inspired Dean’s comment), I kind of liked the idea of developing some kind of clothing that protects you when you pass through areas/fields of high electromagnetic activity. I also like the shapeshift notion …..

I stumbled across a fashion designer called Hussein Chalayan is showing a set of “Transformer” dresses. Each dress is designed to morph through 3 decades of fashion change.


Some use vertical slats that puff out to become more revealing. Others zip or unzip themselves and transform in a variety of ways. See the video below:

How about a garment with some kind of protective material (copper? aluminum?) that unraveled/slid into place areas of high electromagnetic density? (For my part I’m very sensitive to light frequencies, especially those emitted by halogen bulbs, and especially those in my local post office. They make me feel giddy and nauseous. I’ve asked others if they have the same experience as me, and they don’t – which surprises me. I’ve complained to people working there about it, but to no avail.)

Written by ajsteggell

May 6, 2007 at 1:47 am

Maxwell City

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I will participate in the Maxwell City workshop at Atelier Nord in Oslo, May 29th – June 2nd 2007. (I have some homework to do, so the consequent categories in the Electromagnetism are a preparation for this ………)

[ From the website: 1864 the Scottish physicist James Clerk Maxwell presented a set of mathematical equations to the Royal Society. These equations which are now known as Maxwell’s equations describe the behaviour of electric and magnetic fields and their interactionwith matter – electromagnetism. Maxwell showed that his equations predict waves of oscillating electric and magnetic fields that travel through empty space – electromagnetic waves.

Almost 150 years later, the practical applications of Maxwell’s mathematics are deeply and indispensably entwined with our everyday lives. Radio, Television, Mobile phones or wireless networks, all are based on wireless data and information transmission utilizing electromagnetic radiation as a medium. Every wire, cable and electrical device leaks electromagnetic waves during operation. The electromagnetic spectrum which is the range of all possible electromagnetic radiation is a hotly fought over private, commercial and political territory. Every city with its uncountable electric facilities, devices, senders and receivers has an unknown and invisible man-made twin; the Maxwell City. It is an alien kind of architecture and landscape composed from the electromagnetic emissions of its substantial sibling; a truly spectral double resonating across bodies, vehicles and an architecture of embedded conduction.

Maxwell City is an artistic investigation into electromagnetic substance within the city of Oslo and its surroundings. Naturally these investigations will happen in the city itself, including possible originating artworks, situations or interventions. Short lectures, presentations and discussions within the group will provide the workshops with the necessary theoretical and practical background. Maxwell City is interested in both the theory and praxis of electromagnetic waves, politics of technology and the electromagnetic spectrum, electromagnetic waves as artistic material, artistic strategies in the urban environment, invisible and alternate realities and how to make these perceptible….. ]

Written by ajsteggell

May 4, 2007 at 1:42 pm