How often do you think deeply about the products around you? How about those you owned five years ago? Ten? The Cicada — brainchild of [Daniel Kerris] — is an art piece that aims to have the observer reflect on consumer culture, buyer’s remorse, and wanting what we cannot have.
The Cicada consists of an ultrasonic sensor feeding data to a Raspberry pi which — calculating the distance of an approaching human — either speeds up or slows down a servo motor connected to a General Electric Walkman’s cassette speed potentiometer. Upon detecting someone approaching, The Cicada begins to loop the chorus of Celine Dion’s “I Will Always Love You”. As you move closer, the tape speed slows, and there is a transition from love at first sight to nightmarish drawl as the music slows.
Of course as you leave, it begins to play at normal speed again. [Kerris] hopes this will induce the observer to reflect on wanting what we can’t have — especially if it’s the ‘greener’ grass on the other side of the fence — but also about the media we consume: how we view it, how that initial state changes over time, and — at the very least — how to recycle old tech into new projects!
If you’re looking for more tech-art, The Cicada would be at home in this creepy mechanical art show.
18 thoughts on “The Cicada: A Parasite Art Piece With Commitment Issues”
The one drawback of PNGs with unexpected transparency channels
I can open it on a black background fine. The problems seems to be in the css.
Yeah, now it looks like a diagram that explains an invention that helps men to aim at the right spot while urinating at night.
Haha! Will fix the background.
Oh, I was expecting it to crawl out of a pile of junk every 17 years, do a ditty, then crawl back again.
Obviously because Celine Dion was mentioned, don’t know what those Cicada things are ;-)
How is a Cicada a parasite?? What’s the Cicada’s host organism?
Well their grubs burrow into twigs of trees, so could be regarded as a tree parasite.
Do cicadas know of any higher prime numbers than 13 and 17?
Sony made the Walkman, GE relabeled junk.
I still don’t understand how they know and all at the same time.
Uh, did Celine re/undo this song too? The famous version is Whitney Houston.
I don’t think so. From my understanding, Dolly Parton wrote it and Whitney Houston sung it. As such, the only remake was by Dolly Parton herself, not Celine Dion.
Mmmm I was wondering the same thing
If say you used 3 sets of AAs a week in one of these, was it more ecologically responsible to discard it for a rechargeable CD walkman after 5 years? …
So not sure why guilt should be felt about it, though obviously was a non-essential item in the first place.
I used NiCd’s for my Walkman already in the 1980ies.
The generic 500mAh ones around then, barely got you through both sides of a C-90 in my experience
Yep, that was the Walkman. A convenient and comfortable pocket sized music player that left both hands free so that you could push the wheelbarrow full of batteries needed to keep it going.
Not forgetting the convenience of the media, you’d pack up your cassette tote, sling it over your shoulder and be all come on Eileen, grab your antmusic and let’s get rad.
Please be kind and respectful to help make the comments section excellent. (Comment Policy)