Sensing WATER

I-87/San Fernando Street, San Jose CA

paint, custom LEDs, Live weather data feed, interactive cell phone control

paint, custom LEDs, Live weather data feed, interactive cell phone control

Sensing WATER is a weather-responding and interactive artwork utilizing light and paint to define a major downtown gateway in San Jose CA. The project is composed of 2 elements, the massive painted sloped wall that abstractly references flowing water, and the overhead evening lighting that illuminates with rippling patterns of light the underpass of I-87. The project uses real-time NOAA weather data to compose different patterns of light on the ceiling. (e.g.: 0-5mph winds vs thunderstorms). The projected light maintains a similar palate to the painted sloped wall, yet becomes dynamic depending on the weather.

Sensing WATER is a weather-responding and interactive artwork utilizing light and paint to define a major downtown gateway in San Jose CA. The project is composed of 2 elements, the massive painted sloped wall that abstractly references flowing water, and the overhead evening lighting that illuminates with rippling patterns of light the underpass of I-87. The project uses real-time NOAA weather data to compose different patterns of light on the ceiling. (e.g.: 0-5mph winds vs thunderstorms). The projected light maintains a similar palate to the painted sloped wall, yet becomes dynamic depending on the weather.

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In addition to the live weather feed transforming the space, this project is also highly interactive for those players of the Ingress multi-player game. By interacting physically on site with your cell phone, players can transform the space, revealing aspects of the game for a brief amount of time.

 

The site for the work sits over the Guadalupe River. The inspiration for this piece began with the ever-present awareness of water issues in California. San Jose once was know as the Valley of Hearts Delight- before becoming the Heart of Silicon Valley. Known for its fruit orchards and fragrance of ripening fruit San Jose was supported by rich soil and abundant access to water. I was curious to link both the awareness of water issues to the new focus of the high tech industry through the use of dynamic illumination.

The site for the work sits over the Guadalupe River. The inspiration for this piece began with the ever-present awareness of water issues in California. San Jose once was know as the Valley of Hearts Delight- before becoming the Heart of Silicon Valley. Known for its orchards and fragrance of ripening fruit, San Jose was supported by rich soil and abundant access to water. I was curious to link both the awareness of water issues to the new focus of the high tech industry through the use of dynamic illumination.

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Special thanks to those folks who made this project happen: The City of San Jose, San Jose Downtown Association, Kiboworks, Affordable Painting Services, HC Reynolds, Swenson Say Faget, Niantic

 

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The Guadalupe River at this point is a culvertized river that is most often a “trickle” but fills with water during storm events.

Special thanks to those folks who made this project happen: The City of San Jose, San Jose Downtown Association, Kiboworks, Affordable Painting Services, HC Reynolds, Swenson Say Faget, Niantic

Not only do the lighting patterns change based on weather conditions, but they are dynamic- constantly pulsing and chasing, depending on severity of the weather.

Sensing YOU

I-87/Santa Clara Street, San Jose CA

Paint, acrylic, LEDs, steel, sensors, control, cell phone interface

Paint, acrylic, LEDs, steel, sensors, control, cell phone interface

Sensing YOU is an interactive artwork utilizing light and paint to define a major downtown gateway in San Jose CA. The installation is defined by over 1000 painted circles and 81 individually controlled illuminated rings that play a variety of patterns and low-resolution mapped video over the ceiling surface of the I-87 highway underpass. The patterns are activated by pedestrians and bicyclists moving through the space- setting off pre-programmed sequences.

Sensing YOU is an interactive artwork utilizing light and paint to define a major downtown gateway in San Jose CA. The installation is defined by over 1000 painted circles and 81 individually controlled illuminated rings that play a variety of patterns and low-resolution mapped video over the ceiling surface of the I-87 highway underpass. The patterns are activated by pedestrians and bicyclists moving through the space- setting off pre-programmed sequences.

In addition, we have partnered with Niantic Labs to allow users of the virtual real-world mobile game Ingress to temporarily take control of the space and making manifest in the artwork aspects of the game from their cell phones. Inspired by raindrops on water and the echoing patterns emitting from our cell phones, this artwork seeks to link technology and nature in this urban landscape sitting over the Guadalupe River- at the heart of Silicon Valley.

In addition, we have partnered with Niantic Labs to allow users of the virtual real-world mobile game Ingress to temporarily take control of the space and making manifest in the artwork aspects of the game from their cell phones. Inspired by raindrops on water and the echoing patterns emitting from our cell phones, this artwork seeks to link technology and nature in this urban landscape sitting over the Guadalupe River- at the heart of Silicon Valley.

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Special thanks to all the folks who made this possible: City of San Jose CA Office of Cultural Affairs, San Jose Downtown Association, Kiboworks, Affordable Painting Services, CH Reynolds, Tripp Plastics, Swenson Say Faget, Niantic Labs

 

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paint, acrylic, LEDs, steel, sensors, control, cell phone interface

Nebulous

“Brazil” building, Amazon Campus, Seattle WA

Glass, transparent conducting film, aluminum, photovoltaics, LEDs and electronics

Glass, transparent conducting film, aluminum, photovoltaics, LEDs and electronics

 

Seattle is known for its inclement weather and computer innovation. The climate is changing, both environmentally and technologically. We are currently shifting from our analog hard copy world and local computer storage to “cloud-based” systems. The intricacy of these systems eludes most software users and yet clouds of radio waves constantly transport masses of information all around us. The two large pixelated cloud forms above us, inspired by this evolution in technology, float over the Amazon courtyard with two solar lighting shadows imbedded in the pavement below. Neither fully transparent nor fully opaque, these “low res” clouds have select glass discs that shift between levels of opacity in a digital dance resembling old school calculating computers or perhaps pulsing lightning within clouds on a stormy night.

A variety of glass and switch-glass panels designed by parametric modeling form the skin of the cloud-inspired sculptures

A variety of glass and switch-glass panels designed by parametric modeling form the skin of the cloud-inspired sculptures

 

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Special thanks to all of our great project partners:

Vulcan Real Estate Commissioning Agency, property owners
Metalistics Fabrication/installation
NBBJ Architects, parametric modeling (Andrew D. Heumann)
Turner Construction General Contractor
Craig Nelson Electrical Engineer
D&K Electric Electrical Installer
American Switchglass Switchglass fabrication
Peter David Studio glass supplier
Jeff Thon circuit board design/fabrication
Paul Strong programming
Solaright PV LED supplier

 

 

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Compound Sight

Discovery Hall, University of Washington Bothell Campus, Bothell WA

Glass, plano-convex lenses, hemispheric lenses, fresnel lenses, custom steel pivot hardware.

10’h x 20’w x 3″ d.  Glass, plano-convex lenses, hemispheric lenses, fresnel lenses, custom steel pivot hardware

The project title Compound Sight, refers to insect eyes where a variety of lenses make up single a “compound eye”.  There are many ways to see, and we all see in unique ways and focus on things from our own perspective. It also refers to the nature of the co-laboratory wherein the artwork is housed. In the co-laboratory, students are encouraged to collaborate and “mix”, deeply observe and explore.  Hopefully encouragement from multiple lenses will stimulate thought, interaction and foster an alternate and creative perspective to reveal itself. Perhaps like the nature of a compound eye, many images combine into a singular vision.

The project title Compound Sight, refers to insect eyes where a variety of lenses make up single a “compound eye”. There are many ways to see, and we all see in unique ways and focus on things from our own perspective. It also refers to the nature of the co-laboratory wherein the artwork is housed. In the co-laboratory, students are encouraged to collaborate and “mix”, deeply observe and explore. Hopefully encouragement from multiple lenses will stimulate thought, interaction and foster an alternate and creative perspective to reveal itself. Perhaps like the nature of a compound eye, many images combine into a singular vision.

This pattern represented is that of the Fibonacci Sequence (a series of numbers where a number is found by adding up the two numbers before it). This pattern is represented in the architecture of the building, but also is found in many natural patterns including spiral galaxies, hurricanes, sunflower seed growth patterns, the chambered nautilus and many other forms of nature.

This pattern represented is that of the Fibonacci Sequence (a series of numbers where a number is found by adding up the two numbers before it). This pattern is represented in the architecture of the building, but also is found in many natural patterns including spiral galaxies, hurricanes, sunflower seed growth patterns, the chambered nautilus and many other forms of nature. The pattern is also utilized in an adjacent project Fibonacci Echoes

The project is designed to draw your eye away from the white frosted glass and direct it to the many lenses in the project.  As the outside conditions change and movement happens, this image will be inverted and visible from the inside.  Different distances and perspectives on the piece will provide different views and experiences. Due to the optics of the lenses, this becomes a passive kinetic piece without any moving parts.

The project is designed to draw your eye away from the white frosted glass and direct it to the many lenses in the project. As the outside conditions change and movement happens, this image will be inverted and visible from the inside. Different distances and perspectives on the piece will provide different views and experiences. Due to the optics of the lenses, this becomes a passive kinetic piece without any moving parts.

Special thanks to Peter David Studio (glass fabrication), Swenson Say Faget (engineering), Metalistics (steel fabrication and installation), Cascade Glass (glass installation), Washington State Arts Commission (Commissioning agency and PM), and of course to University of Washington Bothell.

Special thanks to Peter David Studio (glass fabrication), Swenson Say Faget (engineering), Metalistics (steel fabrication and installation), Cascade Glass (glass installation), Washington State Arts Commission (Commissioning agency and PM), THA Architecture Inc. (architecture), and of course to University of Washington Bothell.

 

FIBONACCI ECHOES

FIBONACCI ECHOES:  The radiating concentric rings of LED solar lighting are defined in numbers by the Fibonacci sequence and conjure patterns of radiating light, echoes and raindrops.  The Fibonacci sequence (a pattern of numbers where a number is found by adding up the two numbers before it) is represented in the architecture of Discovery Hall, but is also found in many natural patterns including spiral galaxies, sunflower seed growth patterns, the chambered nautilus and many other forms of nature.

Fibonacci Echoes:
The radiating concentric rings of LED solar lighting are defined in numbers by the Fibonacci sequence and conjure patterns of radiating light, echoes and raindrops. The Fibonacci sequence (a pattern of numbers where a number is found by adding up the two numbers before it) is represented in the architecture of Discovery Hall, but is also found in many natural patterns including spiral galaxies, sunflower seed growth patterns, the chambered nautilus and many other forms of nature.

242 solar LED lights make up the radiating concentric rings that are defined in numbers by the Fibonacci sequence and conjure for me the patterns of radiating light, echoes and raindrops. This sequence and the use of light conceptually and physically unify the 2 projects.

242 solar LED lights make up the radiating concentric rings that are defined in numbers by the Fibonacci sequence and conjure for me the patterns of radiating light, echoes and raindrops. This sequence and the use of light conceptually and physically unify the 2 projects.

Eidolon

Christian Petersen Art Museum, Ames, IA

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lasers, first surface mirrors, steel, safety and control systems, glass, dye, water, mylar

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Like its namesake, these sculptural forms appear to appear out of mist and light. Blue lasers enter the glass vessels holding a dye infused water capturing and bringing form to undulating veils of light. Distortions of the optics of the glass, and crinkled mylar send secondary bounces throughout the pieces further animating the optical geode.

 

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I would like to recognize and give special thanks to the folks who helped contribute to this exhibition:

The Iowa State University Museums
Christopher Edrington
Christian Wehr
Mat Wymore
Dorothee Nygren,
Sydney Marshall
Natasha Porizkova,
Lynette and John Pohlman
Emily Morgan
Martin Blank
Trond Forre
video: Bill Gebhart
documentation music: Zoe Keating
and of course Nancy Gebhart

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Decay

Christian Petersen Art Museum, Ames, IA

phosporescent doped wall, laser system, control, programming and safety systems.

As if by magic, patterns are created then slowly fade before your eyes. A simple dark blue laser dot or line moves across the canvas creating a pattern revealed only as a fleeting after image- slowly fading as soon as it is created. It is the persistence of photonic decay that allows us to see that laser projections are merely dots of light moving so fast our eyes can not see them as individual dots, but rather blur them into complete shapes. Slowing down the laser allows us to see what and how we see.

As if by magic, patterns are created then slowly fade before your eyes. A simple dark blue laser dot or line moves across the canvas creating a pattern revealed only as a fleeting after image- slowly fading as soon as it is created. It is the persistence of photonic decay that allows us to see that laser projections are merely dots of light moving so fast our eyes can not see them as individual dots, but rather blur them into complete shapes. Slowing down the laser allows us to see what and how we see.

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Special thanks to Christopher Edrington, Roberta McHatton, Nancy Gebhhart, Lynette Pohlman and our project volunteers.

Coherence

Christian Petersen Art Museum, Ames, IA

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Lasers, playback hardware, mirrored floor, various filamentous materials ©2015

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Coherence, utilizes the special inherent quality of spatial coherence to create the illusion of infinite spaces and provides the magic that will illuminate one filament and not the one next to it. Exploiting this special and unique nature of lasers elevates this environment to more than just a science experiment by creating the appearance of internal illumination where there is none, motion where there is none and with the addition of a mirrored floor, produces a subtle perceptive disorientation while defining and marking space in infinite and mesmerizing ways.

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This exhibit utilizes 2 synchronized RGB lasers to project onto hundreds of suspended filaments creating an oceanic undulating immersive environment of light.

 

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I would like to recognize and give special thanks to the folks who helped contribute to this exhibition:

The Iowa State University Museums
Christopher Edrington
Christian Wehr
Mat Wymore
Dorothee Nygren,
Sydney Marshall
Natasha Porizkova,
Lynette and John Pohlman
Emily Morgan
Martin Blank
Trond Forre
and of course Nancy Gebhart

Shifting Topographies

19th Street BART Station, Oakland, CA

 High density foam,  polyuria “hard coat”, chameleon paint, Glass, specialty dynamic projections.

High density foam, polyuria “hard coat”, chameleon paint, Glass, specialty dynamic projections.

 

Inspiration for Shifting Topographies began with the shifting patterns and colors of the rolling Oakland hills (green to gold) and at the macro scale the ripples of the adjacent San Francisco Bay (gray-blue-green). Other inspirations came from the flashy paint jobs in the car culture of this community and the signature Blue BART station for which the art marked the entrance.

Note the color shifting paint that radically changes depending on angle of the sun, position of viewer and time of day

Note the color shifting paint that radically changes depending on angle of the sun, position of viewer and time of day

 

The sculpture is fabricated from a high-density foam covered with a polyuria “hard coat” most often applied as “truck bed liners”. This super robust material is then painted with multiple layers of color shifting paint that dramatically changes color depending on sun angle and time of day.

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At one end of the station, laminated safety glass with blue and mirrored ribbons of topography disguise the emergency ventilation shafts- providing a sense of movement and visual expansion in a compressed space. The mirrored topography also provides a site context and juxtaposition of the urban Cartesian grid playing against the natural land forms.

moving projections animate the space after dark

At night the sculpture conjures the drama of the adjacent theaters, nightclubs and galleries- providing movement, color, pattern and excitement to this previously under-used alley entrance. The patterning of the projections includes interference patterns created by dueling topographic lines, atmospheric nebulae-like patterning and swirling water-influenced movement.

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Check out the video below to see the night moving projections:

 

Special thanks to all of our great project partners:

City of Oakland, Cultural Arts & Marketing Commissioning Agency
BART: Bay Area Rapid Transit (entrance to the 19th Street Oakland Station)
Martin Kaufman
Sasaki Associates landscape architects and design team partners
Heavy Industries fabricator
Atthowe Fine Art Services installation
Swenson Say Faget engineering
Visual Terrain lighting consultant
Jason Gedrose/ MVStaging programming
Greg Linhares additional photography

 

Nepenthes Paisleyi

Edmonton, Alberta Canada

17'h x 4' x5.6'w. Fiberglass, steel, LED's Sensors, GFRC

17’h x 4′ x5.6’w. painted fiberglass, steel, LED’s, sensors, GFRC

 

The name of the pieces are “Nepenthes.” The name is derived from a Greek magical potion that would cause the drinker to be relieved from or induce forgetfulness of pain, grief, or sorrow. I hope these sculptures might provide a brief respite from a hectic daily life, transporting us briefly somewhere else. Paisleyi is the botanic latin version of Paisley, named after the founder of the Edmonton Fringe Festival- and name of the community wherein the sculptures are located.

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Nepenthes is also the name of a family of carnivorous plants. Beautiful, quirky, unusual, weird. The fascinating tropical pitcher plants, or “monkey cups,” collect water in their leaf vases. The plant water has an enzyme in it that helps dissolve insects (and sometimes small animals) that find their way into the cups, providing fertilizer for the plants that normally live in infertile locations. The shapes of the sculptures are inspired by the shape of a variety of Nepenthes and celebrates the wonderful diversity of Paisley’s colourful neighborhood.

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Monochromatic by daytime, this family of sculptures take on a completely different character at night with the addition of dynamic LED programming.

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There are a number of randomly occurring lighting programs that provide very slow changes throughout the evening. It is designed so that people driving by will not see the changes in patterns, yet if they drive by 10 minutes later they will see a different aspect to the project. When people enter the sculpture, integrated sensors pick up the motion and trigger a series of much more animated sequences.

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The molds for these sculptures were originally developed for the Nepenthes Davis Street Project for TRIMET/City of Portland, Oregon. The Regional Arts and Culture Council has kindly provided permission for a re-envisioning of the original project for the Brookfield Residential neighborhood of Paisley in Edmonton. You can see the original project here: Nepenthes

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Special thanks to all of our great project partners:
Brookfield Residential,  Edmonton (funder and site work)
Heavy Industries (fabrication)
PMCS (LED engineering, and programming)

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video of some of the dynamic LED sequences

Azul Healing Garden

MLK Hospital, Los Angeles CA

The Azul Healing Garden at the MLK Hospital in Los Angeles was conceived as a calming central courtyard in a stressful and arid urban environment. The space is anchored by 33 tons of blue glass mulch, plants with blue colored leaves, and twinkling blue lights in the walkway and planting beds. Rather than just using plants that have historically been used to heal, I was interested in creating a space that could help induce calmness and creativity by utilizing the basic tenants chromotherapy and infusing the courtyard with azul.

The Azul Healing Garden at the MLK Hospital in Los Angeles was conceived as a calming central courtyard in a stressful and arid urban environment. The space is anchored by 33 tons of blue glass mulch, plants with blue colored leaves, and twinkling solar blue lights in the walkway and planting beds.
Rather than just using plants that have historically been used to heal, I was interested in creating a space that could help induce calmness and creativity by utilizing the basic tenants chromotherapy and infusing the courtyard with azul.

The color blue is a calming color that has been shown to reduce blood pressure as well as calm breathing and heart-rate. It stimulates the parasympathetic system and has anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing effects. It can be used to assist in relaxation and fights physical and mental tension.  A blue environment has been demonstrated to make us more responsive to new ideas and increase creativity.  When people relax, they become more open to new ideas and can develop creative solutions to problems.

The color blue is a calming color that has been shown to reduce blood pressure as well as calm breathing and heart-rate. It stimulates the parasympathetic system and has anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing effects. It can be used to assist in relaxation and fights physical and mental tension. A blue environment has been demonstrated to make us more responsive to new ideas and increase creativity. When people relax, they become more open to new ideas and can develop creative solutions to problems.

The tall plant on the right is the Dragon Blood Tree.  When the bark or leaves are cut they secrete a reddish resin called "Dragon's Blood" that is used to stain the wood of the Stradivarius violins.  It also has a number of traditional medical uses and was used by the alchemists.

The tall plant on the right is the Dragon Blood Tree. When the bark or leaves are cut they secrete a reddish resin called “Dragon’s Blood” that is used to stain the wood of the Stradivarius violins. It also has a number of traditional medical uses and was used by the alchemists.

All of the plant material in the garden has "blue" or blue-gray colored leaves.

All of the plant material in the garden has “blue” or blue-gray colored leaves.

Historic uses of Chromotherapy – Colour Therapy dates back thousands of years and to the ancient cultures of Egypt, China and India. Each color has a distinguishing wavelength and energy. The energy of each of the seven spectrum colors (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet) corresponds with the seven energy centers or chakras of the body. Color therapy can provide balance among all of the energies in our bodies. Color can help humans on a physical, psychological and spiritual level. Historically, the ancient Egyptians built solarium rooms with various colors of glass and other cultures used silks of different colors to bath their bodies in various shades of light. The ancient Egyptian temple of Heliopolis had a quartz crystal in the dome that split sunlight into the seven colors of the spectrum each of which filled a healing chamber. Each chamber was a place for people to receive color healing and contained herbs and colored materials. In his text “The Canon of Medicine,” Acivenna wrote about the relation of color to physical conditions of the body and viewed blue as a blood cooler. In the states, in 1876 Augustus Pleasconton wrote, “The Influence of the Blue Ray of the Sunlight and of the Blue Color of the Sky,” in which he discusses the positive influence blue can have in crop growth, livestock and human health. A few years later, in 1878, chromotherapy, the use of stained class and colored lights for healing, is suggested for the healing of burns, nervous excitability and cold in the extremities by Dr. Edwin D. Babbitt. Today, color is still used for healing. Natural therapists are using chromotherapy and successes have been reported in the recovery of stroke victims and other patients with chronic depression.

Historic uses of Chromotherapy 
Colour Therapy dates back thousands of years and to the ancient cultures of Egypt, China and India. Each color has a distinguishing wavelength and energy. The energy of each of the seven spectrum colors (red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo and violet) corresponds with the seven energy centers or chakras of the body. Color therapy can provide balance among all of the energies in our bodies. Color can help humans on a physical, psychological and spiritual level.
Historically, the ancient Egyptians built solarium rooms with various colors of glass and other cultures used silks of different colors to bath their bodies in various shades of light. The ancient Egyptian temple of Heliopolis had a quartz crystal in the dome that split sunlight into the seven colors of the spectrum each of which filled a healing chamber. Each chamber was a place for people to receive color healing and contained herbs and colored materials. In his text “The Canon of Medicine,” Acivenna wrote about the relation of color to physical conditions of the body and viewed blue as a blood cooler. In the states, in 1876 Augustus Pleasconton wrote, “The Influence of the Blue Ray of the Sunlight and of the Blue Color of the Sky,” in which he discusses the positive influence blue can have in crop growth, livestock and human health. A few years later, in 1878, chromotherapy, the use of stained class and colored lights for healing, is suggested for the healing of burns, nervous excitability and cold in the extremities by Dr. Edwin D. Babbitt. Today, color is still used for healing. Natural therapists are using chromotherapy and successes have been reported in the recovery of stroke victims and other patients with chronic depression.


The color BLUE is a calming color that has been shown to reduce blood pressure as well as calm both breathing and heart-rate. It stimulates the parasympathetic system and has anti-inflammatory and muscle relaxing effects. It is linked to the throat and thyroid gland. It can be used to assist in relaxation and fights both physical and mental tension. Blue can also make us more responsive to new ideas and increase creativity. A study at the University of British Columbia, in which participants conducted various tasks on a computer screen with red or blue backgrounds, concluded that blue encourages motivation, “people relax, becoming more open to new ideas and creative solutions to problems.” Blue can also increase confidence and make people feel happier. General exposure to color is beneficial as well. In a study at the Mind Lab, “subjects exposed to colours completed mental tests up to 25 per cent quicker. Reaction times were up to 12 per cent faster, while hand-eye co-ordination and the ability to recall a list of words were also found to be improved.” Color affects the body, brain activity and biorhythms and as a result is being used in the treatment of diseases. In Ayurvedic medicine, blue is identified with the fifth chakra, it is located in the throat and associated with the throat, ears, mouth and hands. Its alleged function is physical and spiritual communication. 
 
Positive Effects of the Color Blue-
-Blue is used in offices because people are more productive and focused in blue rooms
-Blue can lower the pulse rate and body temperature
-Blue calls to mind feelings of calmness and serenity, it is peaceful, tranquil, secure and orderly
-Historically blue was believed to soothe illnesses and treat pain
-It has a cooling and soothing effect
-Blue has positive physiological effects including lower blood pressure, and reducing tension
-Deep blue has proven to help the skeletal structure by keeping bone marrow healthy and it stimulates the pituitary gland that regulates sleep patterns.
 
 
FURTHER READING-
“Color has a powerful effect on behavior, reseachers assert” Lindsey Gruson, The New York Times Science Section, Oct. 19, 1982. http://www.nytimes.com/1982/10/19/science/color-has-a-powerful-effect-on-behavior-researchers-assert.html?&pagewanted=all
This article looks at a study on behaviors of people, particularly children in different colored spaces and looks at how color can influence behavior and work methods. Blue and gray spaces have a tendency to increase focus and productivity.“A Critical Analysis of Chromotherapy and Its Scientific Evolution” Samina T. Yousuf Azeemi and S. Mohsin Raza Department of Physics, University of Balochisan, Quetta, Pakistan, Sept 2005. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1297510/
This paper analyzes the historic practices and scientific principles of chromotherapy and looks at the relationship between the human body and colors.
“A mammalian clock protein responds directly to light” Josh Hill, July 2, 2008. “Think Gene” Blog. http://www.thinkgene.com/a-mammalian-clock-protein-responds-directly-to-light/
This paper by Nathalie Hoang et al. examines cryptochromes in flies, humans and mice. In plants, cryptochromes absorb and process blue light and aid in growth and seed development. The exposure to blue light also reduces flavin pigments and this reduction promotes growth by activating the cryptochromes. In humans the crypotchromes are present and regulate the circadian clock, Hoang found that flavins decrease in humans in response to blue light too.
“Blue Light makes you happy” Jon Swaine, January, 6, 2009. The Telegraph http://www.telegraph.co.uk/technology/4139796/Blue-light-makes-you-happy.html
A study conducted by The Mind Lab finds that exposure to light is generally beneficial and certain colors, including blue improve mood and confidence levels in men and women.
Naess, Inger. Colour Energy. 2004.http://www.natures-energies.com/color1.htm
Hamilton, Jon. “NPR Stories.” 6 February 2009. NPR. 9 December 2011 .
Swaine, Jon. “Blue light ‘makes you happy’.” The Telegraph 6 January 2009: 20. 

 

Special thanks to the project team LA County Arts Commission MLK Renovation team, County of Los Angeles RBB Architects Inc AHBE Landscape Architects Hensel Phelps, (GC) and associated subcontractors

Special thanks to the project team
LA County Arts Commission
MLK Renovation team, County of Los Angeles
RBB Architects Inc
AHBE Landscape Architects
Hensel Phelps, (GC) and associated subcontractors

Sonic Bloom

Seattle Center, Seattle WA

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SONIC BLOOM, 2013, Pacific Science Center, Seattle Center, Seattle WA.
Commissioned by the Pacific Science Center and Seattle City Light’s Green Up Program.
5 flowers: 20’ diameter and up to 40’ tall. Steel, fiberglass, custom photo voltaic cells, LEDs, sensors, interactive sound system and energy data monitoring.

At the foot of Seattle’s Space Needle and a defining entry sculpture to the Pacific Science Center. The project was conceived as a dynamic and educational focal piece that would extend the Science Center’s education outside of their buildings while engaging the public with an iconic artwork prompting curiosity and interactivity both during the day and night.

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The title Sonic Bloom refers not only to our defining location “on the Puget Sound” but also to the artwork itself that sings as the public approaches each flower. Every flower has its own distinctive series of harmonic notes simulating a singing chorus. A hidden sensor located in each flower identifies movement and triggers the sound. So if there are 5 people engaging the flowers together, it is possible to compose and conduct music together or by walking through, randomly set off a harmonic sequence.

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photo © Frank Huster

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Installation crew prepares to lift one of the flower centers onto its stalk. Note the array of custom photo voltaic cells and arching “stamen lighting”

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Special thanks to all our great Project Partners:
Mike Nelson
Metalistics
Galaxy Electric &Solar
Steve Monsey
Paul Strong
Swenson Say Faget
Kiboworks
Bulldog Powdercoating
NW Auto Body
Puget Sound Coatings
Sunbacker Fiberglass
Silicon Energy
DMI Drilling
Van Overbeke Const.
Ace Galvanizing
Sound Deliveries
Enphase Energy
Kelly Early
Brickman Landscape
Frank Huster

 

 

Nepenthes

Portland, OR

Fiberglass, steel, LEDs, acrylic, steel, paint, batteries, electronics.

16.5′ h x 4′ x 5.6’w   Fiberglass, steel, photovoltaic panels, LEDs, acrylic, GFRC, steel, paint, batteries, electronics.

 

The name of the pieces are “Nepenthes.” The name is derived from a Greek magical potion that would cause the drinker to be relieved from or induce forgetfulness of pain, grief, or sorrow. I hope these sculptures might provide a brief respite from a hectic daily life, transporting us briefly somewhere else.

Nepenthes is also the name of a family of Carnivorous plants. Beautiful, quirky, unusual, weird (not unlike Portlandians). They are the weird tropical pitcher plants or "monkey cups" that collect water in their leaf vases that sometimes monkeys drink from. The water has an enzyme in them that helps dissolve insects (and sometimes small animals) that find their way into the cups providing fertilizer for the plants that normally live in infertile locations. The shapes of the sculptures are inspired by the shape of a Nepenthes.

Nepenthes is also the name of a family of Carnivorous plants. Beautiful, quirky, unusual, weird (not unlike Portlandians). They are the fascinating tropical pitcher plants or “monkey cups” that collect water in their leaf vases that sometimes monkeys drink from. The water has an enzyme in them that helps dissolve insects (and sometimes small animals) that find their way into the cups providing fertilizer for the plants that normally live in infertile locations. The shapes of the sculptures are inspired by the shape of a variety of Nepenthes and celebrates the wonderful diversity and quirkiness of this colorful neighborhood.

 

Each sculpture contains solar cells and batteries that take in energy in the daytime and allow them to glow after dark. The time on changes with the season….about an hour after sundown. They stay on for 4 hours after they turn on.

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The project was funded by TRIMET and was administrated by the Regional Arts and Culture Council of Portland (RACC). The project began with construction funds that were originally allocated towards stamped concrete in the center of 4 blocks. The community requested the funds be used for “Markers” to connect China Town to the Park Blocks (and possibly the Pearl District) along Davis Street- highlighting the street as a vibrant walking corridor and connector. The “Markers” project took a few twists and turns and ultimately became these glowing sculptures.

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Construction Photo: Looking inside the the center of the teal sculpture

Construction Photo: Looking inside the the center of the teal sculpture

Thanks to all our great Project Partners: Regional Arts and Culture Council(administration / project management) TRIMET (funding source) Heavy Industries (fabrication) PMCS (PV/LED Engineering and Design) Swenson Say Faget (Structural Engineering) Art and Design Works (Installation) John Russel (Concrete work)

Thanks to all our great Project Partners:
Regional Arts and Culture Council (administration / project management)
TRIMET (funding source)
Heavy Industries (fabrication)
PMCS (PV/LED Engineering and Design)
Swenson Say Faget (Structural Engineering)
Art and Design Works (Installation)
John Russel (Concrete work)

Rays

Rivers Edge Park, Council Bluffs Iowa

Riverfront Park, Council Bluffs Iowa, 2013. Lawn, robotic lighting fixtures, dynamic pattern projectors, Infra red camera, doplar radar sensors, custom interactive software and hardware

Lawn, robotic lighting fixtures, dynamic pattern projectors, Infrared camera, doplar radar sensors, custom interactive software and hardware.

 

Originally inspired by the great European baroque knot gardens, this massive 5-acre Great Lawn is the canvas for a giant ever-changing light environment that echoes patterns of the past and updates them for the future. Utilizing powerful dynamic and robotic lighting fixtures, the lawn is activated every half hour after dark.
Within each sequence, there is a “show” mode and an “interactive” mode. Please see below for more details.

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Some of the light patterns are inspired by slowly spinning “ice flows” as they break up and rotate while move down the river.

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A dance of rotating white lines breaks up the lawn in geometric patterning inspired by 18th century French formal gardens.

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Each pattern is dynamic: slowly spinning, zooming in or out and changing sharpness and color

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Chasing rainbow colors for a few seconds indicates it is time for the “interactive” part of the event. Come onto the lawn and the lights will play with you.

 

In addition to the choreographed sequences, there is a complex interactive lighting component to the project that will track and “play” with people through a series of simple intuitive games as part of every “event”. Tracked by infra-red cameras and radar detectors, the locations and gestures of the people on the lawn in front of the stadium seating will control the lighting in some instances, and in others it will track them similar to follow spots at an ice skating event.

INTERACTIVE  COMPONENTS
1. SENSING: When the general illumination park lights are on, radar detectors sense motion in the corners of the park and direct the robotic fixtures into those areas projecting individually selected spinning patterns.
2. GAMES: The field covered by a chasing rainbow of colors indicates it is time for the beginning of the interactive game section. Each half hour “show” has 2 randomly selected games that play for 3 or 6 minutes.

Each half hour event plays 2 randomly selected games:

The games are:
a. Stealing Dorothy Hamill’s Spotlight: 4 robotic lights randomly select one person to follow in on the field. The game is to figure out how to trick the robot and steal the spotlight from the person selected.
b. Hot-Cold: a blue spotlight is turned on in the field. As people move towards the spotlight the closest person to the spotlight is tracked and their position changes the color of the spotlight- changing the color from blue through all the different colors until it turns red when you jump onto the spotlight. Once you are on it, the “prize” is flashing the entire lawn through a series of colors before throwing the spotlight into another random location and starting again.
c. Cat Laser Pointer: a small green spot intelligently dances and doges the people who attempt to catch it.
d. Yellow Spot Blue Spot: out of all the people on the lawn, the computer selects random 2 people giving each a different colored spotlight. Can you trick the computer into switching followspot colors as it follows you around the field?

Easter Eggs: the name originates from secret animations and videos incorporated into software that are only revealed if you know the secret keystrokes. Our “Easter Eggs” are a series of gestures that will set off some brief visual “prizes” during the interactive game sequence times for “people in the know”.
a. Jump: if more than 55% of the people on the active lawn area jump up and down together then it will cause all the lights in the field to blink on and off like people jumping.
b. Flash Mob: if more than 55% of the people on the active lawn run in and huddle then break out- it will cause all the lights on the lawn to “go crazy” and swirl around for a few seconds.
c. Run for the River: if there more than 55% of the people on the active lawn begin at the curving sidewalk and at one time run towards the river, the whole lawn will ripple in colors of blue, white and teal.

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Robotic Searchlights play “Steal Dorothy Hamill’s Spotlight” with park users during an “Interactive Sequence”.

 

Robotic Searchlights play "Steal Dorothy Hamill's Spotlight" with park users.

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4 people playing Yellow Spot- Blue Spot

 

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Stadium seating as well as the great lawn become a dynamic projection surface for the robotic lighting fixtures

 

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Swirling patterns originate on the Great Lawn but also sometimes get projected across the Missouri River onto Omaha’s convention center.

 

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photo © John Jenkinson

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photo © John Jenkinson

Special thanks to our great project team:

Lisa Passamonte Green, Mike Mahlum Visual Terrain
Chris Barbee, John Jenkinson Bandit Lites
David Beaudry Beaudry Interactive
Brad Haynes (programming)
Greg Jones Martin Entertainment
Gina Ford, Susannah Ross Sasaki Landscape Architecture
Brian Yessian Yessian (music for opening event and video)
Rich Sorich Iowa West Foundation (commissioning agency)
Larry Foster (City of Council Bluffs)

Gilbreths

Valise Gallery,Vashon Island WA

Homage to Lillian & Frank Gilbreth
Fluorescent materials, steel, motors, autotransformers, theatrical filters. Variable dimensions. Valise Gallery, Vashon Island WA 2012,

These kinetic sculptures engage the air and our persistence of vision with tracings of light generated by multi-color fluorescent materials. Depending on speed and material length, the sculptures can create various “resonance patterns” producing different “standing wave” shapes.  Working in 1914, Lillian & Frank Gilbreth, were pioneers of light painting in the interest of studying “work simplification” for efficiency of parts assembly. Their early capturing of the form of moving light for their research inspired these sculptures that seek to give luminosity and sculptural form to air.

Homage to Heliopolis:
In ancient Egypt the city of Heliopolis (in Greek, or “iwnw” in Egyptian) was a famed center of healing. They created the first solariums that filtered light into the rooms through glass and colored silks, infusing the rooms with colored light.  This early “chromotherapy” was used to treat a variety of ailments and spiritual conditions. This updated project utilizing theatrical filters on the windows infuses the gallery with saturated indigo and creates a backdrop of color for the other projects while referencing this ancient temple and the healing practices that took place there. These theatrical filters change the frequency of daylight in order to  mimic UV “blacklight” thereby activating the florescent materials in the gallery.  Notice after being in the gallery for a while that upon leaving, the brain tricks the eye in an effect called “retinal fatigue” changing the color balance in your brain.  As you exit, it will briefly give the outdoor light a decidedly golden color (the opposite of the blue).

Special Thanks to: Artist Trust, Paul Strong, Steve Monsey, Julia Reeve and the members of Valise Gallery

Burle

Valise Gallery,Vashon Island WA

Homage to Burle Marx
Valise Gallery, Vashon Island WA, 2012 Electroluminescent tape, theatrical filters, variable size 

This installation utilizes electroluminescent banding to create a series of dimensional bas-relief drawings inspired by the work of internationally renowned Brazilian modernist Landscape Architect and Artist Burle Marx. Corson has been a great fan of Marx’s work ever since exploring his work in while visiting his work in Brazilia, Sao Paulo and Rio de Janeiro Brazil. Marx’s love of bold patterning inspired from botanic and natural references inspires these wall-sized glowing installations.


 
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 
  
 
 

photo: Andy Moniz

Special Thanks to: Artist Trust, David Verkade, Paul Strong, Steve Monsey, Julia Reeve and the members of Valise Gallery

Conjunctions

Ft Lauderdale, FL

LED lighting, interactive sensors, control system, etched steel, trees

A ring of trees and walkway surrounds the central lawn. As a person walks by an individual tree it changes color from white to green, then slowly fades back to white. Riding a bike around the park can quickly sequentially trigger the trees. As we move through the park, we affect the space around us and leave a temporary mark.

A ring of trees and walkway surrounds the central lawn. As a person walks by an individual tree it changes color from white to green, then slowly fades back to white. Riding a bike around the park can quickly sequentially trigger the trees. As we move through the park, we affect the space around us and leave a temporary mark.

Also hidden around the park within the pavement are 5 metal medallions. When you step on these medallions it sets off a pre-programmed sequence of lighting events, making the trees dramatically change color, chase, simulate fire, sparkle etc. 4 medallions are programmed with consistent sequences, 1 is a wild card that randomly changes the lighting effects on the trees at every new activation.
 

Special Thanks to Broward County Public Art, DDA Ft Lauderdale, Elizabeth Veliky, Claire Garrett

Envir.Corollary

Bainbridge Island, WA

Immuno Environmental Corollary
This project was documentation of an installation done in the woods on Bainbridge Island. Its final format was 3 large-format Cibachrome prints that are part of the City of Seattle's Portable Works Collection.
 
This project was a meditation on the correlation between new emergent diseases/conditions and the unintentional results of manufacturing process that make their way into the environment and ultimately into our bodies.

Artist Planning Documents

 

A range of Art Plans for various municipalities and agencies. A few of which are excerpted below.

 

Diridon Neighborhood Art Master Plan (36p excerpt)
This Public Art Master Plan was created as a complementary Arts planning document to the Diridon Neighborhood Master Plan for the City of San Jose CA. This was created in collaboration with Ellen Sollod.
 
Diridon Neighborhood Master Plan  (28p excerpt)
This Neighborhood Master Plan was created by Field Paoli with contributions by Dan Corson and Ellen Sollod (Arts Planners). The Arts Plan team also assisted in leading public meetings and community charrettes.
 
Broward County Light-Based Arts Plan (16p excerpt)
This Light-based planning document looks at a variety of lighting opportunities and expressions for Broward County Florida.
 
Seattle City Light Arts Plan (9p excerpt)
This Arts planning document looked at projects created during the first Seattle City Light (electric utility) Artist-in-Residence program as well as proposed potential projects for future artists

Waterlines

San Diego, CA

Mission bay is one of the most beautiful bays in the country, and yet when this artwork was created, it also was one of the most polluted bays. Beautiful from the outside and yet possibly toxic if you were swimming or sailing in it. The contrast of this piece was formed from the purified drinking water bottles that both marked  the natural water line patterns formed by nature as well as creating an artificial protective barrier.

1988, waterbottles, bayside

1988, waterbottles, bayside

 

Space Forms

Beacon Hill, Seattle WA

(Inner/Outer) Space Forms
Thermo-formed Polycarbonate, specialty paint, UV lighting and LED lighting. 2009

18 large-scale glowing sculptural forms suspended from a cobalt blue ceiling in the 2nd deepest light rail tunnel in N. America. Glowing forms inspired by microbes, deep sea creatures and other objects of indeterminate scale. In this station removed from the context of the neighborhood, an other-worldly mix of shapes and forms make us scratch our heads and wonder if we are looking through a microscope or telescope.

Special thanks to Barbara Luecke, Andy Moniz, Karl West, Jeff Silverman, Henry Baghassarian, Art Tech, Deborah Ashland
Architecture: Otak Seattle

Civita Residency

Civita di Bagnoregio, Umbria, Italy

Italian Residency: Civita di Bagnoregio NIAUSI fellowship 2008. Various projects+documentation

In a remote Italian hilltown, I participated in a NIAUSI residency exploring and documenting the series of caves, cisterns, carved cellars and grottos in this pre-post Eutruscain village. Known as il paese che muore (the dying city), Civita is an interesting ghost town almost frozen in time, acting as a defacto hilltown reliquary. A series of temporary installations and subsequent photographs were created from these caves- many containing “colombari” or dovecotes. In the Middle Ages, these colombari: dove nesting condos were developed to provide protein in the form of eggs and meat at all times, but especially when the towns were cut off due to a siege. Hundreds of these small nesting holes were carefully carved into the tufa to create homes for these birds. Located half way up a cliff face, allowed the birds to have a protected home with ample ventilation and flying access far away from terrestrial predators.

At left is a temporary installation utilizing fluid-filled, illuminated dimigiani (wine and olive oil containers) in the ancient cellar of Astra Zarina and Tony Hayward. This collection of ancient buildings and foundations was the Bishop's complex built on top of pre-eutruscian foundations and sub-terranian spaces now reconfigured into a home and center of NIAUSI. This cellar opens up mid cliffside to the beautiful views of the valley and adjacent hilltown.

Using a telescopic lens on my camera, I photographed the sides of the cliff and with the print in hand was able to climb up the cliffs to locate these ancient abandoned caves.

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Cave within Civita di Bagnoregio

Etruscan cellar 3 stories under the tuffa. Timelapse experimentation with electroluminescent cable and funerary candles.

Luminaria installation just preceding the "Day of the Dead" celebrations. The candles were recycled and donated to the local cemetery for reuse. The main tower in Civita can be seen in the distance. Special thanks to Miriam Larson, NIAUSI (The Northwest Institute for Architecture and Urban Studies in Italy ), Tony Heywood & Astra Zarina

Mercurial Sky

Director Park, Portland, Oregon

Mercurial Sky, 2010, Portland OR, Integrated LED lighting, video controller, playback content

In downtown urban park devoid of “nature” and plant material, the specialty lighting added to the giant canopy lights up the park at night with a series of ultra low-resolution videos capturing the movement of natural sequences (eg:moving water, a breeze moving branches, fire, clouds, pulsating jellyfish). Looking from a distance or watching reflections in windows compresses the movement into discernible form.

Special thanks to RAAC, Kristen Calhoun, Keith Lachowicz, Miles Cirillo, The Benya Burnett Consultancy, ZGF , OLIN Landscape Architecture