Art We Love

5 Illuminating Solar Powered Artworks to Celebrate the Summer Solstice

In honor of summer’s arrival this week, we want to share some inspiring installations powered by our prettiest star. Read on to see what these 5 innovative artists created by letting art and technology share a place in the sun.

1… Dancing Flowers, by Alexandre Dang

French artist Alexandre Dang studied science and engineering in Paris before creating his solar powered fields of flowers. His sun-charged kinetic art installations have traveled the world to promote the value of sustainable technologies.

Watch Alexandre Dang’s Dancing Solar Flowers at Marco Polo Airport here.

Dang points out:

“Though the sun provides 10,000 times more energy to the earth than humans need, more than 1.3 billion people still do not have access to electricity.”

Dang is personally committed to addressing this need and co-founded the non-profit Solar Solidarity International to advance the potential of renewable energies and encourage solar electrification of schools in developing countries.

2… Nikola Bašić’s Saudação ao Sol

Croatian Architect Nikola Bašić’s “Greeting to the Sun” collects sunlight during the day to power a stunning illuminated display at night. Bašić’s solar and LED art installation interacts with a nearby sound installation called the Sea Organ that he designed to create its vivid patterns.

According to a post in My Modern Met, “The solar powered installation also proves to be an advocate for clean energy… Greeting to the Sun stores enough power to provide a sufficient supply of electricity to light the entire waterfront for a third of the cost.”

Read more on Nikola Bašić’s Saudação ao Sol here.

3… Lux Gloria, by Sarah Hall

Taking traditional stained glass windows to a new level, this transformational art glass installation by AIA-honored artist Sarah Hall is a testament to pairing form and function.

A trio of large windows she designed for this Catholic cathedral in Saskatoon offer more than a chance for spiritual reflection. While wowing visitors with their exquisite beauty, Lux Gloria’s more than 1,000 solar cells are working to collect solar energy and power the building, making the most of Saskatoon’s standing as Canada’s sunniest city.

Read more on Lux Gloria designed by Sarah Hall here.

4… Craig Colorusso’s Sun Boxes

Sounds of Sunshine… Artist Craig Colorusso’s immersive audible art installation features a field of solar powered speaker boxes communing with the ebbs and flows of nature.

Visitors can customize their interaction with Colorusso’s art based on the path they take through the experience. His smart Sun Boxes even adjust to variations in sunlight and stop playing when the sun goes down for the night.

Watch Craig Colorusso’s Sun Boxes here.

5… Tears of Maria, by Glenn Kaino

What happens when the Sun powers the Moon? At the Modern Art Museum of Fort Worth, Artist Glenn Kaino’s sculpture Tears of Maria responds to environmental changes and uses solar power to transform the moon.

By day, a solar powered cooling system forms an icy layer on Kaino’s moon disk. The ice melts when the sun disappears, forming the tears. The Museum’s assistant curator explained to Green Source DFW that “Kaino was playing with the relationship between the moon and the sun.”

“Poetically he thought it would be great for it to be a portrait of the moon by the sun… In the evening, the moon is ‘crying’ for the return of the sun.”

Read more on Glenn Kaino’s Tears of Maria here.

Feeling energized by all the creative possibilities? Be sure to explore our Solstice Collection to see what’s new in original contemporary art now…