This work is a room in which electromagnetic frequencies are blocked out by a coating of graphite covering the entire interior surface. I am creating what is scientifically known as a Faraday cage, except that I’m going about it with more of an aesthetic sensibility rather than sheer utility. By electrically ‘earthing’ the room we reside in a place which is electrostatically similar to being buried deep in the ground.
This room is based on my research into electromagnetic frequencies, specifically the frequency of 8 hertz which has interesting correspondences to our brain waves and to the planet. The earth generates a range of inaudible frequencies that reside between the surface of the planet and the ionosphere. The resonant properties of this terrestrial cavity were detected by the German physicist W. O. Schumann in 1954. The ‘baseline’ frequency of the earth is about 8 hertz (7.8 to be exact). This frequency is inaudible but present at all times. This is something akin to a musical harmonic used in Indian classical ragas where multiple instruments are played to create the melody but are underpinned by a constant single tone termed ‘the drone’ which plays from the beginning to end. 8 hertz is the strongest and most constant signal in the ionosphere. Our bodies as well as every living thing on the planet vibrate in harmony with this frequency. It was then discovered by Herbert Konig who worked with Schumann that there is a direct correlation between the naturally occurring electromagnetic fields and the brain waves of mammals. About 8-12 hz is the frequency our brains maintain when we fall into a state of relaxation, or meditation. Achieving this vibrational state is essential to maintaining physical health as well as emotional and mental stability. It was discovered by Schumann that astronauts journeying into space were becoming quite ill due to the severing of contact with the earth’s geomagnetic frequency. Only after space capsules were fitted with an appropriate 8hz frequency generator were they able to maintain a healthy equilibrium in space. One more interesting correlation to 8hz is that natural healers or people with recorded psychic abilities fall into the range of 7-8hz when performing a healing or entering a receptive state indicating that this frequency must also relate to a sympathetic connection to others.
Our brains respond directly to electromagnetic frequencies, conforming to or matching an ambient signal. When we are tuned in to 8 hertz, we stay healthy and psychologically balanced. Therefore, when this signal is disrupted by other ambient signals, we experience agitation, and in extreme cases suffer ill health and anxiety. Our ‘invisible’ environment is having a detrimental affect on our bodies. In an urban setting, we are surrounded constantly by high frequency electromagnetic waves. Cell phones, wifi, television, computer screens and bluetooth connections in our cars, these signals are everywhere and contribute to a feeling of unease and fatigue whether we are consciously aware of it or not. This “hertizian space” not often considered is also the area utilized by governments and corporations to monitor our whereabouts and intercept our private communications without knowledge or consent.
Essentially, this room reclaims space, insulating and protecting as well as enabling a connection to what can be considered the heartbeat of the planet. By blocking out the electromagnetic signals we reconnect to the earth’s natural frequency and also reconnect to our own internal voice and sense of calm. The circular graphite line becomes the metaphor for the creation of an internal as well as an external sanctuary.