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Shimmering Sun Sculpture Gives Illusion of Warmth in Calgary

Solar Flare is the newest sculptural collaboration by Calgary-based artists Caitlind r.c. Brown and Wayne Garrett that features a dynamic spherical structure mimicking the sun. The shimmering orb has yellow acrylic rods spiking out in every direction like sun rays, simulating a spectacular explosion of light.

Brown tells us that the interactive piece is “designed to artificially prolong ‘golden hour' into the longest and coldest nights of the year.” Its golden glow spreads visual warmth over the cold, Canadian street, but what makes Solar Flare all the more incredible is its interactive element. The sculptural installation is composed of a core cylinder fitted with a small electric motor that is activated by two motion sensors located on either side of Stephen Avenue, where the light sculpture is suspended.

The project explains: “When tripped, either one of the motion sensors switches the motor to 3-volt rotational speed, creating a slow glimmer of light on the surface of the sculpture for a matter of seconds.” Additionally, Garrett wired the transformers, signaling the motor to switch to a 9-volt setting when both of the motion detectors are activated. What results is a rapidly shimmering “sun” that reflects the busy cars and foot traffic around it.

Solar Flare is currently installed on Stephen Avenue in Calgary, Canada through February 1, 2014.

Top photo credit: Neil Zeller

Neil Zeller

Caitlind r.c. Brown

Caitlind r.c. Brown

Caitlind r.c. Brown

Caitlind r.c. Brown

Ivan Ostapenko

Caitlind r.c. Brown

Solar Flare blog


Pinar Noorata is the Managing Editor at My Modern Met. She is a writer, editor, and content creator based in Brooklyn, NY. She earned her BA in Film and Media Studies from CUNY Hunter College and is an alumni of the Center for Arts Education’s Career Development Program in NYC. She has worked at major TV, film, and publishing companies as well as other independent media businesses. When she isn’t writing, editing, or creating videos herself, Pinar enjoys watching movies, reading, crafting, drawing, and volunteering at her local animal shelter.
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