Alessandro Volta’s 270th Birthday gets Google Doodle

The tech titan’s newest charge is Mark Holmes, and today, the artist trots out one beautiful Doodle — his second one ever.

Google’s homepage Wednesday celebrates the 270th anniversary of Alessandro Volta’s birth with an animated illustration befitting the father of the first electrical battery.

alessandro-volta-sua-primeira-pilha-denominada-pilha-galvanica-ou-pilha-voltaica-1320329327Alessandro Volta. (Courtesy of Google 2015)
Holmes writes about his creative process, and you can just feel the new-assignment energy. Render a Doodle for the 18th-century Italian science pioneer, came the call. The artist calls the opportunity “particularly thrilling.”

A Doodle most always begins with the homework — information before inspiration — and so the artist read up on how the physicist/chemist was in friendly competition with his professor pal Luigi Galvani. Galvani, an anatomy man, discovered while dissecting a frog that its legs, even in death, would twitch if touched by an electric current.

For Galvani’s part, this research would reportedly be a spark of inspiration that led Mary Shelley to create “Frankenstein.” But Volta — who a quarter-century earlier had designed his first invention to create static electricity — had his own takeaway from the amphibian’s last spasm, and it involved the touching of two metals.

Volta, a physics professor at the University of Pavia, created a “voltaic pile” — a stack of alternating zinc and copper discs with interstitial pieces of brine-soaked cardboard. Just like that — voila, Doc Volta! — the electrical battery was born. For the first time, in 1800, scientists could tap a steady flow of electric energy; the revelation was a revolution, as the battery sparked a new era of invention and discovery.

By immersing himself in Volta’s creations like so much salty cardboard, Holmes seems pretty charged up by the challenge of transferring a scientist’s legacy into a representational Doodle. Something to illustrate a little measure of the man for whom a measure of electromotive force (the volt) is named.

Pile_de_VoltaAlessandro Giuseppe Antonio Anastasio Volta, who received the Legion of Honor and the Order of the Iron Crown (as well as the admiration of Napoleon), died in Como, Italy, in 1827. He was 82.

Congrats, Google, on your latest art. And your latest artist.







Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/news/comic-riffs/wp/2015/02/18/alessandro-volta-father-of-the-electrical-battery-sparks-inspiration-for-team-google-doodles-new-artist/