Inspired by the dynamic and colorful crop rotations, the Northern Regional Recreation Center Silo in Mecklenburg, North Carolina has been transformed to a lighting art sculpture. Located in Mecklenburg County, the highly visible silo structure recalls the ubiquitous metal grain storage structures seen glinting in the sunlight on farmlands across North Carolina and throughout North America. The lighting concept developed in collaboration with Jill Anholt Studio seeks to create a strong visual identity at night-time for the new recreation center exploring the intersection of regional agriculture and farming patterns with the active nature of recreation center.

The project consists of 32 adjustable RGBA color changing spot lights creating colored patterns on 102 pieces of dichroic planar glass elements that are “planted” on the silo surface. During the day the glass fins react to the position of the sun and their shadows shift reflecting its dynamic nature. At night carefully aimed very narrow beam LED spotlights from top and bottom picks up and continue this dynamic show after sunset leaving the natural light reflections to the electric ones. Referencing the crop rotation cycles the show at night represents the planting, watering, blooming and harvesting phases. The dynamic installation emphasizes the life, activity and movement both within the recreation center and agricultural character of the surrounding landscape.

The high visibility of the installation allows this show to be enjoyed from different perspectives. The light sources are carefully hidden from view with louvres and carefully aiming to allow only the reflected light on the silo to be enjoyed. The surrounding façade and landscape lighting have been adjusted to emphasize this light artwork at nighttime. The hues and levels of the DMX controlled LED lighting system were carefully programmed to represent the colors of the crop rotation with the resting intervals representing the period between two cycles.


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