Light is something we interact with everyday, we cannot experience the world without it. It gives definition to the planet and in the case of the sun it works in cycles. It rises and sets and during the day provides a variable level of light. A different hue and temperature (K) of sun is experienced every minute and it also gives definition to us as humans. We are shaped by the sun, we plan our lives around it, and sometimes we even worship it.
Since the advent of technology humans have been augmenting their environments in an attempt to recreate some of what the sun is doing for us. Unfortunately we’ve never been successful in replicating the variety, temperature, cycles, hues, or effects of the light of the sun. Instead we are left with fluorescent bulbs that buzz a low yellow light endlessly throughout the day. People have used this to stay up past the sun’s setting and continue living and working. It contributes to our current trend of working too much and being too out of touch with nature. We have almost lost our ability as a species to experience a full cycle of the sun and feel its different wavelengths.
Our cities grow denser and open space more developed. We are mold taking over the planet and turning it toxic for ourselves and any other species trying to survive here today. This project doesn’t have the power to change that but hopes to create some empathy to the situation and a re-inspired love of the sun and the experience of living closely to it in terms of light, time, and schedule.
This project replicates the light of the sun in a 24HR cycle in an abstract and artistic way to invoke awe and wonder within the visitors to the exhibit. If one experiences awe the hopeful next step is action. By experiencing light in a way that shows the complexity and different hues and intensities visitors get a new understanding for our natural world, and the natural light provided to it. It also becomes evident that most have not experienced light like this in a long time, if ever. It inspires visitors to recognise the importance of that environmental value and reconnect to the natural cycle of our environment, rather than the augmented one we’ve created inside of our architecture.
By expressing the values of the sun inside of a gallery space visitors get to directly interact with something very far from their daily lives. Often Climate change is explained in detailed data sets explaining sea level rise or ozone depletion, this project has the same goal but done in a more emotive and evocative format.
The actual installation is built from one large vacuum molded piece of acrylic into an undulating form to reflect light and layers upon layers of varying colours of film placed in coordination with the 24hr light and temperature cycle of the sun. It is then placed on a rotating base and rotated beneath a small lamp at a pace 100x that of the usual daily routine of the sun. In this way every time a user visits, they have a different experience and different relationship to the piece as it also emulates the darkness of the sun cycle as well, so you may enter the piece and it is dark for 3 minutes before the warm morning light arrives.