Location: Saint-Bruno-de-Montarville, QC, Canada
Completion date: 2022
Public Art Agent
Collaborator - Creator
Producer - Owner
The hourglass from another time
LAPS is a modern take on the traditional hourglass that gives us the opportunity to literally take control of time. From the top of their 2.33 meters, the 6 giant interactive hourglasses invite the public to change time by turning the steering wheel at their desired pace, in one direction or the other, and to take another look at their perception of time. Time catchers are rewarded with a sound and light experience that inspires immediate wonder.
Take control for a full lap of LAPS; hold your breath, sing a song, clap your hands, propose marriage, do whatever inspires you. Everyone gets to choose the time they want to spend here; this passage of time is truly yours!
LAPS was born out of a common reflection on the uncontrollable nature of the passing of time. In a world where everything is going faster, where people run desperately after time, we wanted LAPS to offer a different take on the individual and collective perception of time.
From the beginning, the vision was clear; LAPS had to meet all requirements to successfully become a tourable installation, enhance public spaces worldwide and provide a safe, unforgettable, sensory and playful experience.
Research and development were a central part of the creation. One of the first challenges was to keep the iconic hourglass shape but make it giant scale. Several variations of these vessels were produced before the final version was achieved. Another question was how to fill a giant hourglass with sand so that it would trickle through just as fluidly as on a small scale, while staying within a reasonable weight range. Ping pong balls were ultimately chosen for their lightweight and playful bouncing. We also wanted spectators to be involved and gave them a big wheel to use to take control of time. The desire to offer a participatory and intuitive experience also required several hours of programming and interactive controls integration.
As specialists in the production of touring installations, Init collaborated with creators Olivier Landreville and Serge Maheu for designing LAPS. The creation of LAPS has been an incredible collaborative journey, reinforced by a common desire to combine design, security and interactivity in order to create a unique, intuitive and playful installation. While the creators and their collaborators could focus on the artistic vision, Init and its partners were dedicated to bringing to life an authentic representation of the conceptualized installation.
LAPS answers a great current need for interactive touring installations to activate public spaces. Therefore, Init partners with Creos. As the world leading agency for tourable public interactive installations in urban spaces, Creos can count LAPS as a perfect addition to the existing portfolio available for all new destinations that are eager to present art in a whole new form.