First published here on Mariano’s Scifoo14 blog

Boing Boing is a “directory of wonderful things”, one of the most-read and linked-to blogs in the world. In June 2013, together with my coauthor Ferdinando Buscema, we have been invited by its editor David Pescovitz to create the opening theatrical experience for Boing Boing: Ingenuity, a 12-hour marathon involving scientists, artists, writers, designers, musicians... and a magician!

Held in San Francisco on 18 August 2013, the event started with a performance by Ferdinando – being at the same time a magic show and a speech about creativity. (1) 

This is my artwork for the performance:

We have shaped “Lighting Ingenuity – The Final Secret Of The Illuminati” as a cyberpunk synthesis of magic and technology. Big fan of historical enigmas, I have contributed to the theatrical narrative with a surreal steampunk touch, hacking a Llullian Wheel (conceived in the 13th century and carved in wood in 2012 by Ian and David Metcalfe) and creating an app for a mobile phone controlling its (parapsychological) functions.

See it in action in Ferdinando’s video:

In the above performance, Ferdinando urges his audience to “write your ideas down” and explains that “books are the building blocks of ingenuity”. He demonstrates this with a magic effect literally bursting out from the pages of a Moleskine notebook. (2) 

My favourite moment is the epic final scene, with Ferdinando interpreting Nikola Tesla revealing the Final Secret of the Illuminati:

The idea came like a flash of lightning and in an instant the truth was revealed.

On the left, Nikola Tesla. On the right, Ferdinando Buscema.


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