Arco del Tiempo - CODAworx

Arco del Tiempo

Submitted by Riccardo Mariano


Location: Houston, TX, United States

Completion date: 2025

Project Team


Riccardo Mariano

Riccardo Mariano


Land Art Generator Initiative

Land Art Generator Initiative


First conceptualized as an entry to the 2019 Land Art Generator Initiative (LAGI) design competition, The Arch of Time was chosen by the City of Houston out of a shortlist of design concepts in the LAGI portfolio to be implemented at full scale in Guadalupe Plaza Park.

The design of the artwork is inspired by the sundial, the oldest known device used to measure time based on the sun’s apparent position in the sky. The artwork deviates from the typical sundial configuration by reversing the role of the gnomon, which traditionally casts shadows. Instead, the time of day is indicated by sunlight projected onto the ground through a series of openings on the surface facing south. This surface is covered with photovoltaic modules capable of generating renewable energy.

The sculpture’s shape is defined by the diurnal motion of the sun in the Houston sky throughout the year. The path that the sun traces in the sky has been enlarged around noon and tapered at sunrise and sunset. This configuration optimizes the exposure of the photovoltaic cell surface by increasing it during the peak sun hours.


The new public sculpture welcomes both locals and visitors, establishing itself as a prominent destination within the city of Houston. Through the apparent movement of the sun in the sky, the artwork activates the space with vibrant light and colors, engaging viewers and involving them in the creation of the work through their presence.

This sculpture serves as a practical and playful illustration of the movement of the Earth around the sun. In addition to captivating visitors, Arch of Time integrates renewable energy generation with public space and everyday life in the Second Ward. Inspired by science and powered by renewable energy, the artwork serves as an ideal bridge between art and technology, promoting educational purposes while enhancing the quality of the public space. Furthermore, during nighttime, the space can be utilized as a stage for outdoor public events.