SOLIGHT SCULPTURE - CAMBRIDGE SCIENCE FESTIVAL 2017

SoLight Sculpture is a dynamic outdoor light installation designed and fabricated by Materials & Methods that debuted at the Cambridge Science Festival at Cambridge City Hall in 2017.


The installation highlights the global need for clean, affordable light as well as draws our attention to the importance of innovation, and how the intersection between design and technology contributes to making our daily lives better, around the world.

This solar sculpture was created for the Cambridge Science Festival by Materials & Methods, and sponsored by LuminArtz. It was made from 360 Solar Helix lanterns provided by SoLight Design. 

The 16' cascading light sculpture was designed to interact with the environment, absorbing energy from the sun during the day, spontaneously illuminating as the sun sets, and turning off as the sun rises again. These cube lanterns are customized with a solar sensor that enables each lantern to turn itself on and off with the solar cycle.  The cubes were also meant to "dance" in the wind -  each string of cubes were hung on slack translucent lines that connected to the upper structure and terminated into the grass hill, so the cascading cubes rotate and sway in the breeze. 

The sculpture was installed onto a very public are, active at all hours of the day and night, and it was designed to engage the public to interact and play. Children and adults were welcome to explore the forest of lines and cubes, and to take photos and share on social media. It quickly became a dynamic focal point for the neighborhood, appreciated by people from all walks of life, the area filled every evening with spectators, marveling at the dynamic magic of the glittering lights.

 

This sculpture was designed and fabricated by Vanessa and the Materials & Methods team with a generous donation of time by Karim Badwan to develop a rigging structure for this unique installation location. The upper structure was fabricated from aluminum tube which contributes to the overall sculpture being very lightweight. The circle was designed so that the anchor points are flexible and can be multiple points in any direction, allowing for installation to any configuration of trees and buildings.  The aluminum structure was made in five segments so it is easily disassembled and shipped.  Each solar light was attached to a line of monofilament cable and then attached to the aluminum frame and again to the ground to prevent tangling. Each cube is made from high performance fabric, and designed to collapse with a rotational fold. 

The sculpture was installed on the lawn of Cambridge City Hall, suspended between three large trees, and remained for 12 days, the duration of the Cambridge Science Festival in April 2017.

Materials&Methods_solightsculpture3
Materials&Methods_solightsculpture4