Solar Sun Flower-Sun Bug-Solar Butterfly - CODAworx

Solar Sun Flower-Sun Bug-Solar Butterfly

Submitted by Rein Triefeldt

Client: Grounds for Sculpture - Simon Properties

Location: Lawrenceville, NJ, United States

Completion date: 2016

Artwork budget: $120,000

Project Team

Solar Kinetic Sculptor

Rein Triefeldt

Rein Triefeldt, LL

as part of the off site exhibit program Sculpture Along the Way

Grounds for Sculpture in Hamilton, NJ

Grounds for Sculpture


The artist’s fascination with solar energy and its potential for beauty led them to start building solar kinetic sculptures. The journey began in 2000 at the College of New Jersey, where the artist taught sculpture and spent time in the engineering labs due to their interest in kinetic sculpture. In those labs, various solar projects were underway, such as solar cars and solar boats. One afternoon, the artist had the idea to build a solar kinetic sculpture and shared it with Dr. Norm Asper, who was intrigued by the concept.
Dr. Asper encouraged the artist and provided him with basic solar energy books for children, a small solar panel, and a 1.5-volt motor. With these materials, the artist created their first solar kinetic sculpture, which he named “Solar One.” The first kinetic solar sculpture made according to art historian Sharla Bailey Kidder. Two years later, the artist was selected, along with one other American, to participate in the Dutch biennial “Art in Motion.” (2003) During this event, he collaborated with Hokstra Solar, using various materials found in their shop, including a battery-operated drill and solar panels, to build a larger solar sculpture.


The SolarButterfly-SunFlower-SunBug project served several goals. Firstly, it aimed to enhance the aesthetic appeal of the Quaker Bridge Mall and create an engaging and visually captivating experience for visitors. By introducing public art into a commercial space, the project aimed to create a unique atmosphere and contribute to the overall ambiance of the mall.

Furthermore, the artwork aimed to promote cultural enrichment and serve as a point of interest within the community. Public art has the power to stimulate dialogue, inspire imagination, and spark conversations among viewers. By integrating the SolarButterfly-SunFlower-SunBug, the project sought to foster a sense of community.

The sculpture's installation in the mall was crucial for achieving these goals. It serves as a focal point, attracting attention and drawing visitors to engage with the artwork. Its prominent placement within the mall's grounds ensures that it becomes an integral part of the visitors' experience, enriching their time at the shopping center.

In summary, the goals for integrating this artwork, were to enhance the visual appeal of the Quaker Bridge Mall, promote cultural enrichment, and create a sense of community. Providing visitors with a unique and immersive artistic experience.

Additional Information

Since Dutch biennial "Art in Motion", the artist has expanded their designs to encompass a wide range of solar-powered creations. These include a solar bass guitar, solar sculptures, demonstrating their dedication to using solar energy as a source of artistic inspiration and practical sustainability.