Electromagnetic Division

Submitted by Carter Hodgkin

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Client: Neiman Marcus

Location: Beverly Hills, CA, United States

Completion date: 2016

Artwork budget: $50,000

Project Team

Artist

Carter Hodgkin

Carter Hodgkin Studios

Art Consultant

Chandra Cerrito

Chandra Cerrito Art Advisory

Overview

Art and science unite in Electromagnetic Division, a dynamic glass tile mosaic for Neiman Marcus on Wilshire Boulevard in Beverly Hills, CA. I applied a procedural drawing process with computer code to simulate atomic particles moving through the architectural space. Thousands of glass tiles form lines and coils which burst forth from the central locus of a curved wall.

Encompassing 190 square feet, 30,162 tiles were used to realize the digital design, with each pixel corresponding to an individual tile. I selected 95 colors of specialty tile to achieve a rich combination of texture and color.

Goals

For a new Champagne Bar in the re-designed Ladies Shoe Department, the design needed to integrate with the store brand, the first floor interior design and a curved wall space. I created a design which emanates with a burst from the center. Lines and coils of glass tile extend from the central locus to the wall's outward edges evoking a whimsical eruption from the opening of a champagne bottle. Silver, chromium, and gold tiles reflect light while creating a dramatic sense of motion.

Process

Collaboration took place by conference calls between the artist in NYC, the project consultant in Oakland, Ca; the store curator in Dallas and store re-design managers in Beverly Hills. I presented several new designs based on a previous commission at Queens College, NY. The store's graphic identity, colors, architectural plans and the construction timeline were all discussed. A design was selected and tweaked. The project was fabricated by the artist's team during the summer of 2015. After completion, the mosaic was shipped ahead of schedule and ready when Neiman Marcus was ready for installation. A Los Angeles tilesetting crew completed the installation within one and a half days.