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Glow in the Dark Futures and Techno-Poetry

Posted on 14 November 2014

This week we landed on a comet
and a glow-in-the-dark bike path was unveiled in the Netherlands.
We are creatures of the night.

The moon and stars have raised us.
Do not be afraid of the night, she says. Come out and play!

This is techno-poetry.

Utilizing glow-in-the-dark technology and solar-powered LED lights the new pathway literally is illuminated by patterns based on Van Gogh's The Starry Night. According to art historian Albert Boime the swirls represent Van Gogh's understanding of the cosmos as a living, dynamic place. In a letter Van Gogh wrote to his brother Theo he said " . . . I dare urge you to believe that in landscapes one will continue to mass things by means of a drawing style that seeks to express the entanglement of the masses."

Van Gogh was also what we would call crazy.

He actually created The Starry Night during one of the time periods when he was living in an insane asylum.

This proximity of creative genius to disease is very interesting to me. Here at Tangle Creations I am constantly reviewing studies which find that some of the very habitual behaviors of some diagnoses are actually adaptive and important functions. For example fidgeting has been found to support better reading and math comprehension, problem solving as well as retrieval memory. This has been coined #fidgettofocus. 

I like to say, Fidgeting is the movement of an inspired mind.

But we find this across the continuum of 'special needs' and persons with different abilities. People with special needs are actually endowed with very special gifts. The examples are endless. So what would it look like if we could lean into the genius of these abilities rather than orient our understanding of special needs and diseases based on their distance from normalcy?

This is the mother of inventiveness and creativity and also the subject of a future blog post.

Today what I am interested in is that after 34 years of creating Tangles,
an invention based on a zen sculptor's understanding of infinity and the centrality of curvism in the universe, we have just launched an entirely new line, Nightballs. And, these balls are nothing like Tangles.

Nightballs are made to be able to play in the nighttime in any weather. Particularly their design, airless and LED motion-sensored, enables them to light up upon impact or movement. So it's the spirals and curves they make in the air for which they are designed. Nightballs are made for pure fun, doing tricks and creativity.

What kinds of curves, spirals, or other movements can you create?

So the developments this week in glow-in-the-dark bicycle pathways based on crazy's artists' perspective of the nighttime, landing on a comet 311 million miles away combined with the launch of our own nighttime line causes me to ask, What does our future look like as we allow ourselves to play in the nighttime more?

This is techno-poetry.

And I want to be a poet.


Boime, Albert (December 1984). "Van Gogh's 'Starry Night': A History of Matter and a Matter of History". Arts Magazine: 88.

Whitney, Charles A. (September 1986). "The Skies of Vincent van Gogh". Art History 9 (3): 356.

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