Technological artist Elliot Malkin isn’t a stranger to religious art. While still a student at NYU, he designed Crucifix NG, a subaudible pulse which uses human bodies to transmit the Lord’s Prayer. Also, when asked in an interview what he thought of televangelists, he said, “I think they’re new media artists, probably the most successful new media artists.”
Malkin took his inspiration for his latest project from what my friend Rob calls a “magic Jewish fence,” or an eruv. Here’s a slide presentation of his Eruv Project from the recent IDEA Conference in Chicago. I’ve never actually heard a halakhic ruling on whether lasers count as valid eruv extensions, and if only judging by his pronunciation of the word “eruv,” Malkin probably hasn’t, either. But it’s really interesting to see him wrestle with the legal issues and the intellectual concept of extending the boundaries of a house.
Pronounced: ERR-oov, Origin: Hebrew, a physical boundary that allows observant Jews to carry needed things (and push strollers) in public on Shabbat despite the traditional prohibition on carrying.