Electrically-Charged Ink Lights Up Silkscreen Prints [Video]

Traditional printing methods are being fused with responsive dyes to create tech-savvy fabrics.

Ross Brooks
Ross Brooks on July 22, 2013. @greenidealism

Orkan Telhan is an Assistant Professor of Fine Arts at University of Pennsylvania, as well as a passionate artist. His most recent work has been combining traditional printing techniques with electroluminescent and electrochromic inks – creating something entirely new in the process.

The result of merging technologies such as silk screening and letterpress printing with electrochromic inks are shape-shifting psychedelic designs. Responding to an electric current, the electroluminescent ink emits light, while the electrochromic ink changes its transparency.


When applied to clear plastic sheets, and connected to a power source, the inks act like a conductor. This means designs and art effects can be controlled with a micro controller, turn on and off for different kinds of sensor inputs, react to information via the internet, or even detect someone’s presence.

Here’s a video that demonstrates just a few of the possibilities using electroluminescent and electrochromic inks:

Orkan Telhan

TOPICS: Design & Architecture, Electronics & Gadgets
Ross Brooks

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Ross is a freelance writer who specializes in topics about the environment, architecture, art, design and creative tech. He is passionate about making a difference with his writing, whether that’s to encourage social change, promote a great idea, or just share a little bit of beauty with the world. You can also find his work on Inhabitat and