Transdimensional

Submitted by Russell Anderson

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Client: The Old Ambulance Station, Nambour

Location: Sunshine Coast, Australia

Completion date: 2018

Artwork budget: $60,000

Project Team

Artist

Russell Anderson

artplusdesign

Art Consultant

John Waldron

Blue Sky View

Overview

The brief explores the relationship between audience and creator requiring an interactive light based piece to be installed high in the gallery space. 
At three metres in diameter and with an industrial ‘steam punk’ aesthetic ‘Transdimensional’ is made of Australian weathering steel, stainless steel, brass, aluminium, acrylic, mechatronic and electronic components, custom servo system.
Transdimensional celebrates the mechanical moment with multiple servo actuators. The work was designed and fabricated in Russell Anderson’s solar-powered studio. 
The sculpture’s movement and lighting are direct and proportionally responsive. Each lighting node has Lidar sensors that react to the movement of people.

Goals

The Horizon Festival is the Sunshine Coast's premier multi-arts festival. The festival connects artists, industries, communities and audiences through an award-winning celebration of arts and culture. The program brings local, national and international artists together for 10 arts-fuelled days of visual art, music, words ideas, film, fashion, art tech, performing arts, street art and creative workshops.
The Old Ambulance Station (Old Ambo) is a key multi-arts venue for the Sunshine Coast. In 2018 the Old Ambo undertook a collaboration with acclaimed, locally based public artist, Russell Anderson to develop a signature piece for the Horizon Festival.
Curator John Waldron brought together a range of exhibitions and events for the Old Ambo that explored the ‘weird and wonderful’. Russell’s Transdimensional light installation became a much talked about piece for the Horizon Festival and drew many people to the venue.
Transdimensional is a fusion of technology, nostalgia and contemporary art. Fully interactive with multiple laser sensors, Transdimensional allows people to alter the height and colour of each lamp as they move under it. The lifting mechanism is an elaborate custom made servo actuator that accentuates the industrial aesthetic and celebrates its own mechanism and function.

Process

The collaboration between the artist and curator was a close one. Together the brief was explored, concepts developed, changed and refined, (some) funding was sourced, the piece was fabricated and a group of volunteers worked tirelessly to complete the work in time for the installation and opening.
Installed for a 3-month period the sculpture intrigued and delighted audiences of all ages. People played with the sculpture by triggering the various sensors to move the lights. Transdimensional is full of personality, it could be ‘shy’ or ‘inquisitive’ in its engagement with the audience.
Russell’s art and design practice is focused on interactive kinetic sculpture ranging from small scale gallery pieces to large, seven metre high steel sculptures. Russell is a public artist with over 25 years experience. He has delivered commissions throughout the state and nationally for government and corporate clients, theatres and festivals.
His art is characterised by highly seductive surfaces of polished and cast bronze, brass, steel and copper and often incorporates playful, interactive lighting, and analogue / digital technologies.
Russell is recognised for his vision and the exceptional quality of concept, product and production.

Additional Information

Photograph: Alan Warren.