Architecture & Design Magazine

Light Walk by David Heaton

David Heaton along with a partner Sandra Huezo, have recently finished an interactive lighting installation ‘Light Walk’ in Jena Germany.

Light Walk is a project designed for the UNESCO 2015 International Year of Light Festival. Located in the passages leading into the Carl Zeiss eG, it is an interactive light installation which aims to encourage the use of multiple passages by displaying the data of the people’s presence from each passage around t​​​​he courtyard into the main passage, containing the visualization. By placing sensors in each of the walkways, the movement of the user is tracked and then shown as a ‘data ghost’ of light through a 3D light matrix. Users in the main passage will experience an augmented reality as they see their own data being visualized, as well as the presence of those in other passages. This will create a trans-local experience by allowing the presence of multiple users in the courtyard to be superimposed in one space. During the night, LED/spot lights will be used to attract users towards the installation and the Sonnenhof courtyard, an otherwise dark area.

The interaction with the installation can be passive or active, depending on the will of the user.  Any individual walking through these passages will be interacting passively, while someone who realizes that he/she is being tracked can choose to ‘play along’ either alone or with a companion.  A series of sensors will be placed in both the main and auxiliary passages to establish when and where a user is in space.  A program will determine how fast the individual is moving based on how often the equally spaced sensors are engaged.  This information will then be fed to the main computer controlling the light installation, which will then visualize the presence of the person.

Designer : David Heaton

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