Darling is the wind blowing today? – Reflecting on energy and immediacy

Darling is the wind blowing today? is an interactive installation, demonstrating the reality of energy generation and use in a relatable, magical, everyday act – listening to music.

In March 2019, President Donald Trump spoke to the Conservative Political Action Conference in Maryland, unscripted and on a wide range of subjects. Among these, he mocked the Green New Deal, progressive legislation aimed at addressing the ongoing climate crisis, by pretending to be a disgruntled man asking his partner if there is enough energy to use household appliances. “Darling,” he says, “Darling is the wind blowing today? I’d like to watch television, darling.”

Yet a model of daily life where renewable energy is generated on a local, community scale will become a necessary part of a survivable future. Trump’s “I want this now” tendencies are childlike, but we are accustomed to this lifestyle of immediacy, and denying it is what inspired his scorn. For us, though, it inspires a vision of more sustainable ways of being. 

Darling is the wind blowing today? makes our relationship to energy much more evident than wall sockets and monthly bills. The boombox will only play music once you have generated enough energy to play it. You queue up a song, set parameters, and push play; a display shows how much power is needed, how much has been stored, and how quickly it’s coming in. Once the bar is filled, the music plays.

Bits Collective, 2020

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