The Velocity of Light

Submitted by Menza Art Studio

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Client: Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Location: Dallas, TX, United States

Completion date: 2018

Project Team

Artist

Carmen Menza

Menza Art Studio

Industry Resource

Joel Olivas

Client

Kimberly Vagner

Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Client

Jill Vangordon

Perot Museum of Nature and Science

Public Art Agent

Joshua King

Aurora Light, Video and Sound Biennial

Overview

The Velocity of Light – A Kaleidoscopic Journey
Animation, video mapping, two 6k projectors, server, custom software, existing hexagonal architectural structures
10' x 8' x 8'

Goals

The goal for this installation was to increase engagement for the public during the holiday months of November 2018 through early January 2019. The theme for the whole of the museum was ILLUMINATE and many commissioned light based works would illuminate the museum during this time.
Starting with the question of “What makes a visual object beautiful? What makes human’s gaze at certain objects longer?” Menza Art Studio created The Velocity of Light – A Kaleidoscopic Journey with inspiration from the prized collection of gems and minerals at the museum. Integration of this commission with the existing architecture was both challenging and integral to success.

Process

Curator Joshua King approached Menza Art Studio with a request to develop an experiential proposal for the Perot Museum of Nature and Science in partnership with the Aurora Light, Video and Sound Biennial. Drawn to the beauty and mystery of objects and the study of light Carmen Menza proposed a custom animation and video mapping installation for the existing hexagonal architectural surface within the museum. Kaleidoscopic and fractal animations were created to correlate to the reflective and refractive qualities of the precious stones on display. Joel Olivas was integral to the success of this project in providing video mapping and custom coding services.
Menza Art Studio, The Perot Museum staff and Joel Olivas all worked jointly on technical specifications to bring the final concept to life. Also programmed as engagement with the public was A Day in the Life of a Gemologist with lead gemologist Kimberly Vagner of the Perot Museum. In this four hour engagement with visitors Ms. Vagner presented her experience and day to day work as a gemologist. Carmen Menza also presented an artist’s talk and video in regards to the creation of the installation.

Additional Information

This Velocity of Light- A Kaleidoscopic Journey was a great success for thousands of visitors to the museum over the 9 week run. Visitors to the installation were engaged by the illuminated colorful hexagonal structures. We experienced many favorable articles and comments from the sponsors and patrons in the days that followed