Client: The Anderson-Abruzzo Balloon Museum and the National Science Foundation
Location: Albuquerque, NM, United States
Completion date: 2014
Skylight is an interactive LED light installation on the Albuquerque Anderson-Abruzzo Balloon Museum’s famed Balloon-shaped window featured in conjunction with the 2014 Balloon Fiesta. It responds to vistor’s answers to sky-related trivia via text messaging through a 21 ft high light artwork that interacts with activities on visitors’ smartphones. The light patterns and animations change in real time based on responses to a fun text-message “quiz” about the alternative energy potentials that surround us in the air and sky, like solar, wind, and others.
To achieve sustainable energy,
we must make informed choices among competing policies and technologies.
One societal problem is a general lack of education on the subject of energy, which extends even into the technologically literate members of society. To address this, we have developed and implemented large-scale interactive visualizations which draw immediate public attention (or, require an immediate action) to a local environment’s energy state.
This project was produced by the Social Media Workgroup, a research lab at the University of New Mexico directed by Andrea Polli. The mission of the Social Media Workgroup (SMW) is to provide professional training and experience to students working in digital media and sustainability through the design and creation of projects related to media technology that enact positive social and environmental change. UNM faculty, exceptional undergraduate and graduate students and outside community experts work in interdisciplinary collaborative teams to design and develop a wide variety of media tools, assets and events. Through this practice-based research, the group aims to investigate and analyze the social and ecological impacts of media technologies.
Project Directed by Andrea Polli with SMW researchers: Russell Bauer – Design build/installation and electronics, Eric Geusz - Programming and dialogue, Kevin Bott - Programming, installation and electronics, Jared Rendon -Trompak- Video, photography and installation, Marisa Gomez- Graphic design. Skylight was produced for the 2014 Balloon Fiesta and supported (in part) by SEPTET – “Sustainable Energy Pathways Through Education and Technology”, NSF Award number CHE-1231046, The Mesa Del Sol Endowed Chair of Digital Media and the Center for Advanced Research Computing