I-87/San Fernando Street, San Jose CA
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.
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 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.
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
The Guadalupe River at this point is a culvertized river that is most often a “trickle” but fills with water during storm events.
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.