Mesmer is a 88” disc with 3,132 LEDs on 48 spokes. As the disc spins, the LEDs change color for a dazzling variety of animated patterns.
Some patterns work with the rotation of the disk, creating spirals and radial shapes. Others use the rotation to create a persistence-of-vision effect, changing the color of each LED in sync with the rotation so that the image hovers in space above the spinning LEDs. The controlling iPad can be set up so that visitors can see themselves mixed into the animation in various ways.
The disc is driven by an electric motor. Particular scenes can command it to speed up, slow down, or reverse direction for dramatic effects. The disc, with a soft, rubber rim can also be spun by hand. When this happens the motor automatically maintains the manually set speed.
The computer program that controls the piece is LED Lab an iPad app that allows any image or video file to be used in creating animations. (City/country-specific imagery can be integrated into the performance.) This app is available on the Apple iTunes Store