Client : KIC, Shanghai Shui On Land
Date : 2018
L 60 m
D 13 m
H 8.9 m
13,480 triangular surfaces, the 3,500 power of 16,581,375 kinds of light changes, over 200,000 soldered points, 3,500 LED lanterns… 8 tons in weight, 8.88 meters high and 60 meters long, these incredible numbers all describ the sculpture named “OBJECT #MS-15”; this interactive public installation was officially unveiled yesterday. Another brand-new sculpture from Zhang Zhoujie Digital Lab, it is like Mobius bands. It can be viewed from a 360-degree angle and has a kaleidoscope of changes, the changes follow the lights and the surroundings. It is representative of the lab and another example of how far computer creativity can go to put digital beauty into the real world.
For Zhang Zhoujie, the completion of this large-scale installation is also the peak of his long-term pursuit of exploring digital creation. From the past small-mass, small-scale product, to now creating an interactive audiovisual art installation grounded in the possibilities of its environment, each design practice is based on the accumulation of past experience. Between the transition of design and art, these experiments rarely replicate a duplicate experience. With the highest degree of complexity and precision, this sculpture has overcome the challenges inherent in the creative concept, technology, site conditions, manual management and other aspects, once again setting new records.
The sculpture is based on the process of welding sheet metal, which has rich and transparent layers, allowing the internal lights to shine and glisten through. From welding, to processing the surface material, to installation, each step is painstaking. The form of the sculpture is twisted and complex, meaning that each cross-section and welding point must be 100% accurately aligned. It has a total of 13,480 triangular surfaces, and more than 200,000 welding points. This is the first time a sculpture was assembled on site; large lifting machinery was needed to build it. The construction team also reached an unprecedented size due to the geographical location of the sculpture in the city center. A dozen skilled workers could only work late at night, and it took fully two months to complete construction.
The beams of light in the sculpture change colorfully at night, seemingly rich in industrial technology, however, the changes actually rely on modern life - bustling traffic, cloudy weather, throngs of people and other environmental factors. The internal sound receiver digitally encodes the sound and through the program presents a variety of light changes. Zhang Zhoujie Digital Lab and the professional lighting technology team RDI Design International Lighting worked together on this project. RDI combined the programming, installation and technology after repeated debugging, and finally made the lighting perfectly match the structure itself. This project is an accumulation of artistic creativity and lighting technology.
In recent years, Zhang Zhoujie Digital Lab has made a number of public art installations and sculptures. There are installations combining LED light belts dancing in water following the wind, or a changeable form based on numerical control standing to greet people. Each practice has improved the technical language of digital art, pushing the frontier of the interactions between digital creativity with nature and the real-world. This time, the unprecedented creation has raised the construction technology to a new level. This may also be a new imprint in the field of contemporary public art. Are there any possibilities for large sculptures in an open field? It can be viewed all-around, and it is not entirely static, the changing lights closely connected to its surroundings at all times.
The final structural form also depends on its geography. Because it is located at the subway entrance, the space below is limited and the foundation is not that solid. However, although the local environment is limited, the disparity in the terrain can be used in accordance with local conditions. For example, under the sculpture there is a sunken square. There is a sunken plaza underneath the sculpture, look at the sculpture from below, its huge body size creates shock.
The sculpture was created for KIC, but even though it is a commercial project, the sculpture itself plays a public role that is not limited by commerce. Back to the sculpture itself, it is like a monument that inspires innovation, with cleverly designed endless Mobius bands. The sculpture pays tribute to the Internet in making all human ‘borders’ disappear; it’s a guide to the future. Meanwhile, the sculpture, lighting and environment interact with each other under an endless perspective; it leaps beyond the fate of the original intention and gives endless answers to everyone.
"I've been using a variety of practices to verify the space for computer creation, or lets say digital creation, and its feasibility. It can be verified by art, by the design system, it can also be tested by the market as a brand, and it can also be a teaching case to carry out theoretical analysis. These areas are complementary and collaborative to me, for I’ve never stopped thinking and considering how to develop it. In the vast digital world, there are still too many possibilities." (Excerpt from Zhang Zhoujie’s interview with Ideal Home IDEAT)