Wednesday, October 23, 2013

After Trillium: Solar Powered Robotic Sculpture

I've recently installed After Trillium, a solar powered robotic sculpture inspired by the Iowa native Trillium flower. The sculpture is made of cast aluminum and kiln-formed glass and uses custom electronics to respond to changes in the local environment. The flower opens each morning and closes each night and is illuminated from within for 4hrs after dusk.  The main environmental response is determined by temperature, which controls how far the flower opens each day. In winter, when the temperature is below freezing, the flower remains in a dormant stage and does not open. Through the warmer months, the flower opens more and more each day until it is in full bloom during the hottest part of summer. I see this sculpture as a bridge between technology and nature and something that makes a direct correlation between a physical form and unseen forces in nature. After Trillium was commissioned for the Iowa River Landing Wetlands Park in Coralville, Iowa and was inspired by the poem Arboretum by Iowa author Mark Levine.

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