February 28, 2013
| by Lisa Montgomery
Who says a loudspeaker has to look like a loudspeaker?
At Lena, a café in Ann Arbor, Mich., a stunning, hand-painted wall hanging comes across as a unique piece of art, but surprise—it also plays music.
Crafted by Leon Speakers, a custom loudspeaker manufacturer in Ann Arbor, the 8-foot-wide, 6-foot-tall wooden “grill” disguises 24 speakers and also incorporates LED lighting, making it a focal point of the restaurant.
“When the distributed audio system is on, people can’t figure out where the music is coming from,” says Ethan Kaplan of Leon. “They’re completely floored with they learn that it’s coming from the artwork on the wall.”
If you look closely, though, you can see the speakers tucked in between the wooden slats. It’s more audio food for thought from Noah Kaplan, president of Leon by day/classically trained artist by night.
If this whets your appetite for artistic sound, know that most of Leon’s speaker creations are for the home, like these recently introduced custom outdoor models.
Check out the video below to see another example of Leon’s amazing speaker designs, and Noah Kaplan in his artistic mode:
The Making of The Dragon from Leon Speakers on Vimeo.
Related: Soundbars Reaching New Heights ... and Widths
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Lisa Montgomery has been writing about home technology for 15 years, with a focus on the impact of electronics on a modern lifestyle.