Media artist Nicholas Hanna was living in Beijing when he saw people painting Chinese characters on the sidewalks in parks. This form of art, called water calligraphy, gave Hanna the idea to create a bicycle that could do the same thing. Hanna’s Water Calligraphy Device is a tricycle with a laptop and water tanks on the back. The laptop directs little nozzles to drip water dot-matrix style in the pattern of Chinese characters as the bike pedals its way through Beijing.
“That’s a real common question,” says Hanna, “and there’s no real good answer. Just because.” Hanna says he wanted to see if he could play with the people in Beijing by bringing his western approach to water calligraphy. The bike certainly is a conversation starter, and it’s now featured in Beijing Design Week. Check out the trike in action in the video above.