LMCC GAPS grant / Weather Beacon / by dante2

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Click on the image above to view movie.

Erik S. Guzman 2008 -09

The Weather Beacon

This Project will be made possible by the kind generosity of the following programs and institutions and companies.

LMCC's GAPS, Grant for Art in Public Spaces.

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Ambient Devices, giving the needed weather information for this project to succeed. "The Ambient Information Network represents one of the largest, if not the largest, datacasting networks in the United States" Alan Reiter, president of Wireless Internet & Mobile Computing

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Weather Beacon is a kinetic sculpture that will emit a code of flashing lights, forecasting the weather and will be situated in lower Manhattan.

This weather indicator will merge public wifi, structure, movement, and light through a physical object that invites the public to connect to nature through art.

Dimensions: 8' H x 12'W x 16'D

Project Weather Beacon is made possible, in part, through a grant from the Lower Manhattan Cultural Council with the generous support of The September 11th Fund.

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Weather Beacon is a kinetic sculpture that will emit a code of flashing lights, forecasting the weather for a curious public in Lower Manhattan.

This weather indicator will merge public wifi, structure, movement, and light into an object that invites the public to connect to both physical and invisible surroundings through art.

From the days of the original Dutch settlement, to the landfill of oyster shells that expanded the southern tip of the island, weather and harbor activity have been major elements of life in Lower Manhattan. Through modernization, the area has moved away from this history and its close ties to nature. Project Weather Beacon will utilize modern materials and technologies to heighten the present-day viewer's awareness of weather patterns, connecting the public back to nature using modern means. The work will act as a translation tool, or oracle, that allows for the visualization of the invisible forces of nature.

The project will forecast the weather by using the public wifi connection in the area. Weather data will be received and translated into a simple language that will control the project. Being connected to the Internet, the sculpture will act as a beacon for the weather, but could also be used to broadcast stock market information, solar flares from the sun, or traffic on the FDR. Project Weather Beacon can be used to visualize any system in flux. Once the piece is constructed, the information fed to the beacon can be changed to enable different collaborative projects and ways to engage the public throughout the year.

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After doing more research the design has changed.  The main shape is still present but a lot more glass is present to show the working structure.

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Some simple shots placing Project weather beacon in a lower Manhattan environment, Fulton Street market and the sea port.

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What will it look like?

Aesthetically, the project mirrors icons of harbor life. Long mast-like poles will extend horizontally from the center of the hull's main structure. Four progressively sized anchors will spin at different speeds along the length of the mast. Light projected from behind the rotating anchors will create an array of different light patterns. The entire structure will be encased by thick shatterproof glass, allowing the viewer to experience the project safely. A weather key that clearly states the meaning of each pattern of lights and rotations will be posted on the outer glass of Project Beacon.