Mirror Mirror

Submitted by SOFTlab

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Client: Alexandra Office of the Arts

Location: Alexandria, VA, United States

Artwork budget: $110,000

Project Team

Artist

SOFTlab

Client

Alexandra Office of the Arts

Overview

Mirror Mirror was commissioned by the City of Alexandria’s Office of the Arts. The artwork takes the form of an opened circle, 25 feet in diameter and 8 feet high, that visitors can walk inside and around. This structure in-the-round, like a lighthouse, is both a place to look outward at your surroundings and a beacon to be seen from afar and watched. The materials and interactive nature of the artwork reference the special type of lens used at Alexandria’s own historic Jones Point Lighthouse – called the Fresnel lens – the most advanced lens technology of the 1800s, which used a series of prisms to concentrate the light source and direct it into a narrow horizontal beam that was projected outward.

Playing with the ideas of reflection and refraction of light, Mirror Mirror’s interior and exterior are clad with a mirrored surface that reflects the surrounding environment in unexpected ways. Through a panoramic array of mirrors and sound-responsive lights, Mirror Mirror will visually blend the waterfront, the fabric of Old Town, and the activity of pedestrians in the new park.. While the exterior is a monochromatic mirror that reflects the urban environment, the river and visitors themselves, the interior’s mirrored surface is tinted with the full color spectrum, providing anoth