The array of devices inside the tire entices viewer participation. As a hand reaches out to it, eerie sounds emanate from the piece. If any of the devices are touched, the sounds responsively change to a dramatic squeal. The experience is intentionally designed to be inscrutable. It is a device that stands to remind us of our individual lack of technological knowledge. As humanity impresses itself with its technological invention, individually we understand very little of it. Even old technology. We may think we understand older technologies, but even the Theremin, which was invented in 1927, is full of invisible forces that seem mysterious and are difficult to explain. I built this Theremin from instructions found in an old Popular Mechanics article. The process of making my own was frustrating, exhilarating and humbling. I hid the electronic instrument inside a tire with buttons, knobs and wires to present the viewer with a semi-familiar interface and an illusory sense of control.

  • Mnemonic Devicive 1997
  • Dimensions 23" diameter x 7" depth
  • Media Theremin, car tire, buttons, knobs, wire.
  • Exhibited Works/San Jose, San Jose, CA • ACM/SIGGRAPH, San Jose, CA