Traffic Mantra – Trajan’s Forum, Rome

Peter Erskine’s solar spectrum environmental art installation, “Secrets of the Sun” at Rome’s Trajan’s Forum was supported by a sound installation “Traffic Mantra” by O+A, Bruce Odland and Sam Auinger. In this excerpt, they demonstrate how to turn traffic noise into music using a Roman Amphora.
In 1989, Peter Erskine created a new, immersive Solar art medium he named Secrets of the Sun: Millennial Meditations (S.O.S.) S.O.S. is about the beauty and dangers of Sunlight: the beauty of the rainbow and the horrors of global warming, ozone depletion and mass species extinction. Erskine leverages the emotional impact of art to address the full range of Nature from her most elemental expression as Pure Light, to her most complex expression as Global Ecology. In his installations, our life-giving star, the Sun, is the energy source, subject matter and medium for the art.

In 1990, word of Secrets of the Sun drew curators and museum directors from around the country to Erskine’s Venice, California studio. In 1991, he was invited to create an installation for the Projects Room at New York’s Museum of Modern Art, and in 1992, the S.O.S international exhibition tour opened in the 2000-year-old buildings of the ancient Roman Forum. His Solar Spectrum Environmental Art has received broad coverage in the global media including seven magazine cover stories in four languages, over 150 press articles, and six global satellite broadcasts. TV and radio stories featuring his work have been broadcast in over 150 countries. Erskine has collaborated successfully, in over 25 public projects in five countries, with project stakeholders; architects, engineers, contractors, railway, government and Arts Agencies, and community members. He knows that all stakeholders play a vital role in developing a narrative that turns into successful and enduring public art.