We’ve had our eyes on all the happenings coming out of the 30th annual TED conference in Vancouver this week. Beyond the creative speakers and inspiring TED talks that hit the stage — it was actually an interactive art installation that really made us look. Artist Janet Echelman teamed up with the folks at Google to create Unnumbered Sparks, one of the world’s largest textile sculptures… ever.
Janet Echelman is best known for creating pieces that interact with the the forces of nature (think wind, light and water). She’s done tons of large scale textile pieces that decorate urban spaces from Seattle to Amsterdam to Sydney and beyond.
Just in time for TED, Unnumbered Sparks hangs near the Vancouver Convention Center. Made from ultra-light fibers it flies over buildings, walkways and the water. Its massive scale makes it impossible to miss, and absolutely begs you to stop and join the fun :) By the way, what better backdrop for an outdoor interactive installation than gorgeous Vancouver? This pretty much has us planning our next trip!
Your next questions are probably, how exactly does this work and where does Google come in? With a little help from high-definition projectors, a browser window lights up the textile sculpture — a Google Chrome window to be exact. YES, that’s right. Those gorgeous colors and patterns are projections from a window in Chrome.
What does that mean? WELL, anyone with a smartphone or tablet that has Google Chrome can participate in “making” the piece. Just open Chrome and pull up the installation website. From there, choose a color and it’s time to get started. Images and lines that you draw across your phone will be projected onto the piece. Say what?!
You’ve heard us say it before, but here at Brit HQ we believe everyone is creative. That’s why we’re especially stoked about Unnumbered Sparks. As Echelman says: “For years I’ve been exploring how to let people become part of the artwork… people can actually draw and paint with light and they become co-creators with us.”
Have you ever experienced an interactive art installation? Were you able to see Unnumbered Sparks in Vancouver? Give us the deets in the comments below!