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Pierre Alain Hubert takes fireworks philosophy to the next level

This is another level up for fireworks philosophy. We thought we were pretty out there when it came to our obsession with fireworks but this guy takes it even further. This is a very cool interview with Frenchman Pierre-Alain Hubert and his take on small fireworks, his use of them and the artistic and philosophical implications. Very cool.

Pierre is an art professor and also a pyrotechnics artist (his words). He has taught in Marseille, France and also at the CAVS dept. of MIT in Cambridge Massachusetts. Some serious credentials.

Check the video above and see what you think.

It is very refreshing to hear someone talking about fireworks and not merely saying “I like em big and loud

Of course, everyone has their own preferences for fireworks and we see it here every day, some people prefer quiet fireworks, some like pretty colours, some go for the size of the effect or how long it hangs in the sky. Many people like gold coloured fireworks and many prefer silver. Some like the classic, red peony – green peony combination that plagues so many consumer fireworks.

The important thing is that we all like different styles; it would be a boring world if we were all the same.

What I like about Pierre-Alain is that he sees the effect at close quarters, rather than looking for a massive cloud of crackles that fills the entire sky, he wants one good crackle that fills his field of vision. He is able to focus on that single effect and make it larger than any massive barrage could produce. By singling out one effect, even one so small, he has brought the firework closer to us and of course, us closer to the firework.

This is evident when we discuss with many of our customers the benefits and drawbacks of Cat 4 or “professional” fireworks. Cat 4 fireworks are, of course, much larger and can create incredible effects that fill the sky and cast brilliant light all around. This is great. However, when you have to stand so far away from the firework (in order to observe safety distances) does it then just become a far away version of the same firework that you could fire with Cat 3 (consumer/display fireworks). We hear time and time again from our customers that use Cat 4 (and use many of our fireworks with them) that our fireworks create just as impressive an effect, and the ability to use them closer to the audience brings the crowd into the display further. Pierre has taken this to the next level, using tiny Cat 2 (garden) fireworks and viewing them much closer has only changed the scale. Not the quality of the effect. In fact, he has emphasised the effect by eliminating the background distraction and the need to stare at the distance, taking in the bigger picture. In other words “Zooming in” creates a clarity and undistorted vision and allows the appreciation of the effect in its purest form.

It is always interesting to find other ways of looking at fireworks – literally. We salute Pierre for his unusual way of thinking and encouraging others to take a second look.

It is important to note here that we love big fireworks. Happy philosophising!

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