Light + Energy Innovations for MIT Anniversary Celebration

This festival makes me yearn for a trip to the east coast. Starting tonight, Bostonians will have the opportunity to celebrate MIT’s FAST Light (Festival of Art + Science + Technology). Described as an evening of “kinetic illumination”, over 20 interactive installations will line the Charles River in Cambridge.

Not surprising for such an innovative university, the campus has been transformed into a virtual playground for faculty and students to explore the design concepts of transformation and light.

With a strong emphasis on the interaction between human activity, natural energy, technology, and visual effects, here’s just a sampling of some of the innovations taking place:

Light Drift Sculptures MIT FAST

Light Drift by Meejin Yoon

Orbs of light on the shoreline are linked to similar fixtures that bob like buoys in the river . When users interact with the sculptures on the land, the fixtures floating in the river fluctuate in color, collapsing the distance and reinforcing the capacity of human interaction to shift the installation.

IceWall by Yushiro Okamoto and Kian Yam

A wall created from blocks of ice was placed on the campus grounds to slowly melt away. Implanted with seeds inside the ice blocks, the real outcome of this installation will be the blooming flowers it triggers.

aFloat by Otto Ng, Ben Regnier, Dena Molnar, and Arseni Zaitsev

Inspired by “ripples without liquid”, a surface of flickering LED light sources clad the platform of the MIT chapel (designed by Eero Saarinen). The sacred space presents a new (and relatively uncharted) canvas for interactive light media technology.

Such an inspiring set of installations. I think it’s time to scrap the weekend plans, Cambridge here I come!

Image credits: FAST Light