Like the opening scene from a science fiction movie, a figure walks into a dimly lit 17th-century church only to discover a giant, 7-foot-tall shining silver dome. As they reach to touch the futuristic globe, foils on the ball’s surface curl like flower petals away to reveal a brilliant light. Morphing in response to the warmth of human touch, Studio Roosegaarde’s intriguing Lotus Dome is an exploration into the dynamic spaces between humans and the technology and the structures they create.

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At once sublimely organic and at the cutting edge of technology, Dutch Studio Roosegaarde’s Lotus Dome is an absolutely gorgeous interactive installation. Housed in the Sainte Madeline church in Lille, France the flower is covered with smart foils which curl in response to light and heat, revealing an illuminated core. Developers from the studio created these metallic petals using several thin layers of polyester.

Playing with light and shadow, the piece is the Studio’s investigation into the worlds where natural and man-made objects intersect. The more people that enter the church, the more animated and responsive the Dome becomes, creating what the Studio refers to as “Techno-poetry”. Commissioned by the city of Lille for the Lille 3000 FANTASTIC exhibition this year to revitalize the deserted Renaissance building, The Lotus Dome will be on display until January 2013. See the Lotus Dome in action here.

Via Dezeen