6. Accomplishing major discoveries in NEW YORK and NIAGARA
Appalled by the poor living conditions of emigrants in New York, Tesla decided to dedicate his life to the invention of machines which would make human lives easier.
The harsh life in the metropolis, that Tesla encountered upon arrival, is depicted through four poor quarters, a recreation of tenements, bringing to life Jacob Riis’ book How The Other Half Lives,published at the end of 19th century and pioneering the use of flash photography, that helped to finally reduce extremely non human poverty that was everyday reality of the life in slums.
In these poor quarters of New York, we encounter Edison, who is building his empire on the exploitation of many. Among many failures in his battel with Tesla, Edison also lost the battle for the light bulb patent and that motivated him to invite Muybridge to co-create with him the first commercial cinema – kinetoscope – which is recreated as an interactive display for the visitors at the exhibition. With this peep-show device, Edison earned money from the poor in waiting rooms who, to see Edison’s scenes from everyday life or simple theatre sketches, had to pay several of their hard-earned cents.
For a long time, even the technically contributed to the invention of cinema, Edison refused to show films in “auditoriums” for fear of losing control overpayment.
We will see later, in his encounter with Georges Méliès, that Edison paved the path for Hollywood.
Exploiting the poor in order to earn more money for himself and the rich, Edison remained trapped by the past, and thus he is left in New York slums.
In this “room” visitors will see some of the most important TESLA inventions and original apparatus.
One of the most important is The Egg of Columbus, which is actually an example of the first device art that Tesla created in order to sell the AC patents to Westinghouse, after which he pretty much fulfilled his dreams in just ten years’ time.
In the triumphal arch, a few hundred yards away from Tesla’s most famous lab at 5th Avenue, in which he gave illusionistic-like performances for the elite, we aim to depict four key moments of Tesla’s work and all his accomplishments in his 10 years of work through four interactive dioramas:
1. Tesla’s lab on Fifth Avenue in which he researched high frequencies and wireless power. A famous place for its private magic shows for the New York elite of that time. Mark Twain was the main guest testing all-new Tesla “gadgets”. Unfortunately, the Lab was burned down during Tesla work on the Niagara power plant.
2. Chicago World’s Fair, which was illuminated by Tesla's polyphase alternating current system. Tesla also held his demonstration of wireless neon lamps in a hall devoted to electricity. At this expo, the entertainment industry was singled out for the first time as a particularly important segment of human work, and Muybridge had an entire hall dedicated to his films. Wizard of Oz was inspired by the illumination of the fair.
3. Niagara power plant, which came about as a result of lighting the Chicago World’s Fair, where Tesla and Westinghouse proved they had the best system of long-distance transmission of electrical energy, earning themselves a contract for the building of the Niagara power plant.
4. The first public showing and demonstration of Tesla’s teleautomaton – a remote-control toy boat.
7. COLORADO SPRINGS LABORATORY – the first Mars explorations
Encouraged by these successes which had earned him great financial gain, Tesla moved to Colorado Springs where he built his famous lab in which he proved that he had found a way to utilize electrical energy from “the air”, and where he stuck light bulbs in the ground and lit them by wireless power generated from Tesla’ great coils in the lab. During a short stay on Pike’s Peak, Tesla received signals from space which he claimed weren’t cosmic noise but signals from Mars.
8. TESLOPOLIS – a magical High Rise New York of booming Art Deco
Inspired by these discoveries, Tesla left for New York.
Visitors are stepping in an elevator like space, to take them at the top of the world to TESLA dream city of TESLOPOLIS
Here time stops flowing linearly. Visitors are transported into a world without the beginning and without the end to observe the events of the time from a perspective of the world we live in today.
Entering the “cyclorama”, a reconstruction of the first 360 degrees cinema introduced in 1900. at the world exhibition in Paris, where visitors can learn on teslopedia touchscreen installations about human progress and era of Art Deco, High Rise, Science Fiction, movies and things that start to bloom at the beginning of 20th century thanks to electrical power from Niagara power station.
In Teslopolis we also meet Georges Méliès, the special effects pioneer, whose films delighted the entire world, until Edison stopped him in his quest for monopoly over the film industry.
Visitors can watch 1st SF films from Georges Méliès, experience VR worlds, and step for a minute into a little Tesla home in Smiljan or immerse themselves in space dive …
TESLOPOLIS is an imaginary world of New York and Art Deco represented by the recreation of some of the most beautiful New York spires, created precisely thanks to Tesla. How? By building the Niagara power plant, Tesla allowed humans time for creation and artistic growth, which brought about the Art Deco movement between the two wars.
This movement left its mark on New York and made it into a city we adore today. Art and avant-garde were being born at every step. Film and music became everyday life accessories for all social classes. This incredible energy was sadly extinguished by wars, not unlike Tesla’s tower on Long Island, which was never completed because the rich investors weren’t interested in what it was meant to achieve: a free transfer of power and radio signal throughout the globe. Their only goal was to control the flow of energy, money, and information, just like today!
Besides Tesla and Méliès, in Teslopolis visitors will also meet his friend, the unique painter, princess Vilma Lwoff-Parlaghy, one of the favorite portraitists of New York elite of that age. She was the only one Tesla posed for, for his only known portrait, and only because she allowed him to ideally place the lights in her studio. The portrait is also one of the first ones painted under the electric light, which was widely written about in newspapers at the time.
But Vilma wasn’t just a good painter. She was a unique artist and an absolute necessity for Tesla’s scientific mind. They were both famous hotel residents. At the time, Tesla resided in one of the most luxurious hotels of the time, the newly built Waldorf Astoria, which set the standards for every luxury hotel of today, while Vilma got the complete floor of newly opened Plaza on 5th avenue, with separate elevator built just for her and her little pet zoo with Zebra, crocodile, cats and even a baby lion for short time.
9. RADIO DREAM – one man’s vision for retro-futuristic reality
In the world of Radio, Dream visitors are entering the final etheric stage of Tesla’s vision … it is a time of his full contemplation through the streets of New York, enjoying the beauty of the growing city and human creativity … but as well as contemplating over the war destructions, feeling cosmic pain that, apart from that he provoked a creative burst of humanity, actually he felt that he failed to “bring” peace to all hearts …
In Radio Dream, visitors will be inspired by the creative impulse that is pulsating from Tesla philosophical, almost prophetic writings of that time, all the way to the contemporary artists who found him as their essential inspiration …
They can stop at broken Tesla’s tower, as the symbol of an idea, the idea of a free united world, which would surely have remained forgotten had it not been so grandiose in format. Here, once again, we see the performance ingenuity of Tesla, who knows that the time he lives in cannot keep up with him, and that the ideas and knowledge he carried within, which are the foundation of what we nowadays call the smartphone, if he will not at least materialize in the format of huuugeee tower that idea, his knowledge will remain forgotten, and one thing he couldn't leave undone, is to leave this world without leaving behind him all the inventions and misteries of the nature he taped into during his life journey on earth …
Tesla knew that only that experience would leave a trace and that one day we need to go back to that experience and reject everything we do not need, to build a world together in which every man is a small and functional wheel of a larger universe.
At This point you can feel you want to take one more “spin” in a dreamlike passageway of Film Fresco - Mechanical Figures Inspired by Tesla, and discover the cogs within your mind turning towards creation, sharing, love, peace and play, and especially material relief and ease to help you feel the potential for eternal life. And that is exactly what Tesla spoke of through categories of electricity, frequencies and energy correlations in space.