Visitors at Calgary's first Nuit Blanche festival were treated to gorgeous illuminated cloud made from burnt out incandescent bulbs in the city's Olympic Plaza. Designed by Caitlind r.c. Brown and collaborator Wayne Garrett, CLOUD is a large-scale interactive sculpture. Over 6,000 reclaimed bulbs cover a wire skeleton frame, which is illuminated with energy-efficient CFL bulbs on the inside. Festival-goers merrily gathered underneath the cloud, playfully turning lights off and on with metal pull strings into the wee hours of the night.
CLOUD is an interactive lighting installation designed by Caitlind Brown for Nuit Blanche Calgary – an all-night art festival that took place on September 15th. The festival occured in Olympic Plaza from 7pm to 3am and featured 6 performance art events, including CLOUD. Brown began the project by collecting old burnt-out incandescent bulbs from people in the community. CLOUD received contributions from individual households, museums, historic attractions, arenas, and Eco Stations. The project was an experiment in community collaboration and re-imagining the potential of garbage as well as a beautiful art installation.
Once they had enough bulbs, Brown and her team built a metal cloud-shaped frame to which they attached over 6,000 old bulbs. Then they installed CFL bulbs underneath the bulbous canopy and attached simple metal pull strings. Once the sculpture was installed in Olympic Plaza and powered up, Visitors stood underneath the cloud and played with it by turning lights on and off. There are so many lights that it’s uncertain which string connects to which light, so visitors would spend minutes trying to get them all off or on. The festival only lasted one night sadly, but we’re happy to report that CLOUD will have a permanent home at the Science Center in Calgary, Alberta, Canada.
Images ©Doug Wong and Caitlind Brown