Renewable-Powered Art: A Fresh Concept

Who knew that renewable energy had the wherewithal to power a new piece of conceptual art?

Niklas Roy is a Berlin- based artist with a knack for tweaking technology, reconfiguring machines and, in his own words, inventing useless things. His newest project, constructed for Berlin’s Museum Night, uses a still-working but not connected waterwheel, a lot of rope, some pulleys and a handful of music boxes. Roy calls his contraption a water-powered multichannel sound installation and named it the “Wasserklang Modulsystem.”

water powered audio

image via hackaday

“(Artist)  La belle Imira and I teamed up in order to connect the museum’s huge and unused water wheel with a couple of tiny music boxes,” he explains. “They are distributed in the forest that surrounds the old forge and alongside a rail track. The music boxes are all different and play related melodies (“Berliner Luft,” “Moonshine Sonata,” “My Way”). A several hundred meter long looped rope connects the music boxes with the water wheel in an expressive zig-zag course.”

Here’s a video of Roy’s fascinating, whimsical, Rube Goldberg-like installation:

Steve Duda lives in West Seattle, WA with three dogs and a lot of outdoor gear. A part-time fly fishing fishing guide and full-time writer, Steve’s work has appeared in Rolling Stone, Seattle Weekly, American Angler, Fly Fish Journal, The Drake, Democracy Now! and many others.