Upon walking into Pier 48 for the World's Fair Nano in San Francisco, the first thing you see are these dual spinning wheels:
Called "Spokes," the mesmerizing display was created by artist and engineer Christopher Schardt, a longtime Burning Man contributor who has been creating sculptures since 2000. Schardt runs LED Labs, which creates commissioned displays in addition to his own projects; "Spokes" was his first LED display to incorporate physical motion.
Each wheel is 88 inches in diameter and contains 3,132 LEDs. Here's what it first looked like when he began prototyping it in his shop last year:
Seeing it in an illuminated space like Pier 48 does rob the piece of its full visual punch. Here's what it would look like in a properly darkened space:
Want to go trippier?
And here it is incorporating the human form:
Schardt can program and control the displays from his smartphone or tablet using LED Lab, an app he created for the purpose.
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In order to make it easier for others to create their own LED displays, Schardt has made the app free to download, and it's getting rave reviews.