Client: SCRAP Gallery
Location: Indio, CA, United States
Completion date: 2015
Artwork budget: $50,000
Cotney Architectural Lighting
The color scheme of the Sun-Catcher sculpture mirrors the vibrant yellow hues of the
sun. A solar panel is installed on the top panel of the sun totem – capturing the
energy of the sun during the day and emitting its dramatic stored light at night, giving
the sculpture an added dimension. This energy is released at night in the form of light
– maintaining an energy balance that cannot be borrowed against. Sun-Catcher is a
visual display of the power and energy that’s available every day from a single solar
panel’s relationship with the sun.
A unique style has evolved that reflect the artistʼs understanding of the natural world,
by using heavy industrial metals and laser jet cutting methods to create solar
powered sculptures. By necessity, nature has solved many of the problems we are
currently facing in our physical and built environments. Morrison attempts to imitate
the design principles that exist in the world to create sustainable solutions with art, by mimicking the patterns and strategies found in nature.
Art with a Sustainable Solution. Inside the SunCatcher is the battery that, like plants, collects and stores the energy released from the sun. The solar panel that is built into the top of the sculpture and and the battery are intimately connected - like photosynthesis in plants that is the phenomena of life and growth. The solar panel captures the energy of the sun during the day and the SunCatcher emits the dramatic stored light at night, giving the sculpture it’s added dimension.
The Solartech 125W solar panel's sole function is to convert sunlight into useable energy and transfer that energy through the charge controller to the battery bank. The charge controller scales down the energy produced to the correct voltage (12v) in order to charge the batteries. The batteries store the energy to be used until needed. The two 92 AH batteries run the 12 LED floodlights for about 14 hours continuously before needing a recharge. The 12V-DC LED lights require 10 Watts of power each, which when combined needs equivalent power of a single 110 Watt lightbulb.