You've never been so popular as when you're riding around the streets of San Francisco in a 1967 Volkswagen Beetle covered in 1,659 flashing lightbulbs. As the pulsing hum of electric generators comes barreling around the corner, it's enough to put a smile on the face of even the most jaded SF resident. "I'm Eric Staller," he introduces himself, as we stand outside the car for a interview, "and I just can't help but answer to my deepest subconscious impulses." Trained as an architect, the New York native soon found his calling as an artist, dabbling in sculpture and performance art at the University of Michigan.
By the 80s, Staller's impulses began manifesting themselves as "Urban UFOs," strange apparitions like the Volkswagen Lightmobile and the spherical Bubbleboat that leave the casual city dwelling on-looker wholly unsure of what they've just seen. It's a strange and wonderful sort of electronic magic. Staller also created the ConferenceBike, a seven-person vehicle that has appeared all over the world, most notably becoming a mainstay on the Google campus. We can't think of a better way to kick off our new show Peripheral Vision than a ride around the City By the Bay with Eric Staller.