Now that CDs have gone the way of the 8-track tape, what is there to do with all that useless metal and plastic? UK Artist Bruce Munro took 65,000 defunct discs and turned them into 100 shining waterlilies for his light installation at Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania. The floating recycled flora took their shape from the Victoria waterlily, a species first hybridized at the gardens in 1961. Instead of LEDs (which Munro has used in past pieces), this project relies on the light of the sun to illuminate the reflective surfaces of the large, flat pads.

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Bruce Munro knows how to make CDs shine. As a part of his Light installation at the Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, he repurposed 60,000 old albums into 100 floating waterlilies. Drawing upon C.S Lewis’ book The Voyage of the Dawn Treader and landscape paintings by Georgia O’Keefe as sources of inspiration, he used the symbol of the plant to represent the border between two worlds. The artist’s manipulation of light reflects moments in his memory in which he felt light was a catalyst for change and transformation. Ultimately, his aim was to “pass on a positive energy; nothing more intellectual than that.” Making visitors feel the warm glow of a smile is his great aim and satisfaction.

Striving to be environmentally responsible with his work, Munro creates his pieces in order to communicate feelings of reverence for the natural world. “Initially I used discarded materials to save on costs. Soon material choices also became the subject matter of the installations,” he says of Light. “For me, there has to be a reason—however idiosyncratic—for everything I do and these days I am drawn more and more to the idea of creating an experience that is gentle on the landscape.”

All materials were recycled after Light finished its run at the end of September.

+ Bruce Munro

Via FastCo Design