Our objective was to create an interactive and immersive lighting installation, to feature temporarily in the food court space in Westfield Stratford to celebrate the festive period.

We had to consider a family-friendly, engaging moment that transcended the many calendar highlights of the festive period, re-imagining the Christmas tree icon.

Taking inspiration from ice crystals, nature’s geometry, and contemporary architecture, we created an installation that felt as if you were looking through a kaleidoscope into the aurora borealis.

The structure was made of 528 steel rods, angled into cascades of triangles and connected by 174 cast-bronze nodes, which were made through 3D printing and then cast in bronze.

At the top of the tree stood a starburst, comprised of 25 rods of light, taking the total structure to a height of 12 metres. Seen from across the multi-levelled mall space, a beacon atop the tree.

Laid into the interior skin of the tree were LED RGBs in extrusion, arranged in a cone structure that traveled up to the top of the tree and phased through different lighting states throughout the day, further transporting you to the other-worldly northern lights landscape.

These changing lighting states were programmed to complement the use of dichroic film. Dichroic film and light are an ethereal combination that create something magical. Using the film upon polycarbonate, we were able to reflect a colour from the spectrum, whilst refracting another. I.e when sending red LED throughout the inside of the tree, we were able to harness a duality of reflecting and refracting green and purple hues on the film.

This duality fed into our design of the walk-through element of the installation. On the internal panels of the base we added angled mirror, giving spectators an outstanding view of the inside of the tree. This drew them in and invited them to experience a completely different colour-scheme and feeling than that of viewing the outside.

The walk-through aspect of the design also allowed visitors to envelop themselves in the vastness of the ‘Infinitree’, and gave them the opportunity to capture themselves and their loved ones for sharing on social platforms. This gave further amplification to Westfield’s position and presence as a destination during the festive season.

Video: https://youtu.be/HUScYa4G8N0

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