The Man Behind the Curtain

Test firing

Picture 1 of 4

While building this, it took a while to get the ignitors to work properly. This is a test firing.

Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain

This is the most technically sophisticated fire piece in the Töad Meädow stable. George Hampton of Buffalo Lab and Damon built this piece, Pay No Attention to the Man Behind the Curtain in May-June 2014. It debuted at the City of Night arts festival among the grain elevators in South Buffalo shortly afterwards.

It features a wireless control box with 5 buttons on it. Each button corresponds to a different flame jet on the piece. Audience members take the box and press the buttons in whatever sequence they want to. As they press, a microcontroller in the control box remembers their sequence of button presses. Once they are done programming their own fire show, they press the “play back” button and their pattern of button presses are played back with fire.

Seth Hardy, of Site 3 coLaboratory, designed the Wifire 16 circuit that controls the ignitors and propane valves.

Irish Propane and Dry Ice generously donated 400 lbs. of propane to fuel the piece at City of Night.

Since that time, The Man Behind the Curtain has gone to art festivals and some private events.

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