Petals of Light - CODAworx

Petals of Light

7+

Client: Kaiser Permanente

Location: Scotts Valley, CA, United States

Completion date: 2022

Artwork budget: $65,000

Project Team

Artist

Kana Tanaka

Kana Tanaka Art, Inc.

Art Consultant

Beth Jones

Beth Jones Art Consultants

Installation Contractor

Tony Orantes

UrbanLab Design, Inc.

Overview

Inspired by the wildflowers and coastal forests, this installation within the two-story entry lobby evokes the feeling of encountering a field of lupine flowers. The suspended canopy of glass flowers consists of over 500 dichroic glass petals, woven together vertically and ending with clear blown glass droplets.

Kaiser Permanente Santa Cruz County Medical Offices, Scotts Valley CA
Glass and stainless steel
10’-7” x 11’-6” x 10’

Goals

I was introduced to this project in order to upgrade the feel of the space by installing a glass suspended sculpture in the two-story lobby space inside the medical office building. The space was built in 1988 and the ceiling could not be added any structure reinforcement, so the light-weight sculpture was required.

The 23’ high ceiling space was surrounded by glass windows from floor to ceiling (east to south sides). From the stairway to the 2nd floor offices offered a pleasant view to the outside trees and urban surroundings. I wanted to create the experience of looking over the lobby space down below to be a more special experience by adding the glass art installation in the midst of the air.

Walking through Scotts Valley, I was in search of a sense of peace in this challenging time. I walked under the redwood trees to the hills and came across the field of lupines. I started imagining how to bring the sense of nature’s serenity inside the building--like the experience of looking up at the shiny branches of the very tall trees and the moment of encountering the wild flower field on the nature trail.

My hope is that nature's serenity and energy, reflected by my installation with colors dispersed from glass petals, will shine a light on each of our lives.

Additional Information

Only on a sunny day in the early morning– the direct sunbeam enters the space and shines the suspended glass petals– the magical light show begins (at 30 minutes after the sunrise time) and lasts for about 2 hours. Looking up from the ground floor entrance area, you will see deep colored shadow patterns from the dichroic glass petals projected on the right white wall above. At the same time, glass petals’ light colored reflection appears on the left walls, and all around the space, moving and shimmering like fluttering butterflies. This unexpected movement of the reflected color patterns was caused by the constant subtle air currents and vibrations in the building transferred through the suspended cable line. These shimmering colored light reflection patterns are visible from outside the building.