Created by: Byung Hun Cho, Mika Hirata, Katrina Larson, Nathaniel Leslie, Arsalan Rashdi, and Tristan Santos.
On a surface level, this installation takes a unique look at the way people view rainbows and inclement weather. The installation consists of a pathway that leads to a clear umbrella which is suspended from the ceiling. Above the umbrella are 6 strings of addressable neopixels, each strip in a different colour of the rainbow, and beneath are shattered mirrors and splashes of different blue fabrics that emulate puddles.
The viewer enters a room that is empty aside from the rainbow installation and the sound of rain. When they are far away from the umbrella, the neopixels drip in blue to represent rain drops. A sense of awe and wonder fill the viewer as the technology and natural elements meld, creating a semi-surreal experience. Upon walking underneath the umbrella, the lights stop flashing and become a constant rainbow of colours. In this refuge the viewer experiences a break from the elements where they can embrace the beauty of the lights. The presence of the mirrors further this experience by expanding the space that the rainbow occupies in the room, thereby increasing the sense of wonder in the viewer.
Inspired by the world around us and the incredible things that occur naturally, we aimed to recreate the experience for urban people. On a larger scale, this installation aims to remind an urban audience of the beauty of nature in all of its forms, even stereotypically negative things such as rain can be enjoyable. As the majority of the world lives in an urban centre, they are less exposed to the Earth’s raw environments and this piece pushes the viewer to get out and experience some of these. It is also a showcase of how natural environments can be present in an urban world.