Project proposal for Nikola Tesla’s Monument, 2007

The aim of the competition is to draw up a project plan on artistic design of Nikola Tesla’s monument in the parking area of Nikola Tesla’s Street, situated between Yugoslav Partisans’ Road and Fleming’s Square in Prague.

Ing. arch. Jan Dluhoš
MgA. David Moješčík MojDa
BcA. Michal Šmeral

2nd place in the competition.

The project idea and conception:
Nikola Tesla was an extraordinary phenomenon of science, a character nearly mystical. He introduced many inventions and contributed to broad usage of electricity. He both provoked and fascinated his contemporaries. In his innovative approach he did not bound himself by any of the conventions of his time. He was very often one step ahead and inspired other generations of scientists in seeking knowledge. There are still many areas of Tesla’s research that have not been fully investigated. In his personal life, Tesla did not find much appreciation and lived in solitude. He was considered an outsider, magician and “the man of lightning”.

Tesla’s fabulous determination and deep knowledge on electric energy has been a major inspiration for us. The many streams of Tesla’s interest and his powerful desire for scientific progress has brought us the idea of a figure walking without touching the ground being symbolically elevated into the higher spheres and, at the same time, into its solitude and seclusion.
Electric discharges, which often appeared in Tesla’s contemporary photographs, will both symbolize energy and reflect the spiritual and intellectual progress of a man – a man, who stays utterly alone in his unceasing search for truth and outer world recognition.

Design and construction:
The monument presents an air-walking figure with imposing electric discharges flashing out of. It is placed in the half-length of the lawn in the square, asymmetrically to its direct axis. The figure is actually Nikola Tesla’s portrait wrapped in wire like a reel. We will make a standard clay model and cast it bronze. There are flashes coming out of the arms and legs of the figure, which complete the composition and are simultaneously the constructional support of the sculpture. They are made from bended and welded glazed stainless tubes anchored in concrete bases hidden in ground. The whole construction is completed with three lighting bodies inserted into the surrounding ground for effective night illustration.

The proposal has been consulted with specialists and its feasibility has been verified. The work itself can be divided into three parts:
Concept (Artistic)
Project (Administrative)
In the Conceptual part we will model the figure according to a standard method with the portrait features based on photographs. It will be cast in bronze in a specialised company, where also the composition of flashes made from welded and glazed stainless tubes will be specified. In the Project part we will work out documents for the project approval and execution. In the structural analysis part we will set and verify the load capacity of the tube and base constructions. We will also design electric connector and install the lighting equipment. In the Construction part we will raise the monument with its surroundings.


Competition Elaboration