The name e-ansã comes from the name of an Orisha: Iansan. Iansan is a spirit entity of the Afro-Brazilian religious faith Candomblé. This entity is connected with the winds, hurricanes and tempests and has the power to control those natural forces.

The dress is composed by an aluminium structure where the fans are placed. Covering this structure there are hundresds or ribbons in red, orange and yellow in reference of the colors of Iansan.

Those ribbons are called "fitinhas do Senhor do Bonfim" and are used in a religious context in Brazil, mostly in the state of Bahia.

They appeared in 1809 as a sort of souvenir from the church. It was worn around the neck like a necklace, at the same place where saints and medallions were hung.

The ribbons worked as a type of currency: upon making good on a promise, the faithful use to give to the church a photo or a small sculpture of beeswax representing the part of the body which was cured with the help of the saint. As a souvenir of the favor, these ribbons would be acquired, symbolizing the church itself.

Nowadays it is common that people worn around the wrist with 3 knots that correspond to 3 wishes. These wrist ribbons come in all colors - each for a different saint - and bear the words "Lembrança do Senhor do Bonfim da Bahia" meaning "In remembrance of the Savior of Bahia." (Senhor do Bonfim refers to Jesus, "Our Lord of a Good End"). Measuring 47 cm/ 18.5 in, which is the length of the right arm on a Christ statue in Bahia's Senhor do Bonfim church, the ribbon is tied around the left wrist in three knots, each one signifying a wish. Once the string falls off naturally, your wishes will be granted.

No one knows when the transition occurred from the old style ribbon to the new one (worn around the wrist), although the new ribbon was popularized by the street vendors of Salvador around the 1960′s, when it was also adopted by the Bahian hippies as part of their style of dressing.

Religion, invisible forces, tradition and technology are mixed together in this dress that intends to aware people of electronic pollution especially with the increasing use of cell phones. Maybe the modern Iansan could also control the electronic fields.


The dress is composed of 110 computer fans, 4 antennas, batteries and a microcontroller. The detection system constantly checks and verifies whether there are any waves in the atmosphere that are put out by mobile phones. This live information is sent to a microcomputer. The microcomputer activates the fans that creates wind and blows this through the dress.

This work was possible due to the Lab MIS residency program.