Location: Houston, TX, United States
Completion date: 2021
Artwork budget: $20,000
Falon Land Studio
Consulted on projection mapping, theater lighting components, and projection screen fabrication
New Aspect Design
Independent Creative Technologist
Creative Director at Sawyer Yards
Provided installation and de-installation assistance for custom built components
Sara Van Buskirk and Jacob Spacek
Provided projectors and lighting components
The Bayou Beacon is an environmental light sculpture that expresses water fluctuations of White Oak Bayou. This project uses water quality monitoring data to express water level and flow in a para-metrically designed light sculpture installed in the train shed at Sawyer Yards.
Houston’s bayous shape the city. The bayous fluctuate with varying levels of rainfall, but that action of moving and flowing stormwater is always happening in the background.
The design goals for the Bayou Beacon were to create an approachable experience of historic bayou flood data for the public. Additionally, the work took advantage of an unusual post-industrial setting and transformed the former train shed into a unique immersive art experience.
Many collaborators contributed to bringing this work to fruition. Fuko Nara, Assistant Designer at Falon Land Studio, led the creative coding and technology components as well as created the animation and hand-built the scaled model prototypes for previous iterations of the installation. Clint Allen, of New Aspect Design, consulted on the projection mapping, theater lighting components, and projection screen fabrication. Matt Felsen, independent creative technologist in Brooklyn, provided early technology consultation for the data expression design. Grace Zuninga, Creative Director at Sawyer Yards, provided the space to us and supported the marketing efforts for the event. Sara Van Buskirk and Jacob Spacek provided installation and de-installation assistance for custom built components. Projectors and lighting components provided by 4Wall.
Partners: Project space provided by Sawyer Yards Arts Campus and supported in part by the Houston Arts Alliance and the Houston Mayor’s Office of Cultural Affairs.