When the sun sets on the waterfront tidal stairs, pier and pontoon this evening, they will be transformed into a symphony of colour, light and sound thanks to a new addition.
Titled ‘Wash', the permanent sound and lighting installation work brings together the sea and the city, and is the final stage of this Heart of the City waterfront project.
The brainchild of some of New Zealand's leading sound and lighting designers and composers, ‘Wash' features recordings of tamariki from Te Kura Kaupapa Maori o Otepou in Welcome Bay.
The installation's lead artist Marcus McShane says the children were amazing to work with, and the recordings of their waiata and haka are ‘simply beautiful'.
“Our sound designer Chris Winter also did some hilarious attempts of dancing in front of them so we could record them laughing naturally. As a result, their recordings are a key feature of the sound component of the installation.”
The natural water movement and LED lights combine with the sound in this unique work.
These boxes will project coloured lights onto the pier. Photo: Ryan Wood.
“As each wave rolls down the pier, the speakers beneath the pier will locate a pulse of composed sound that travels the pier in sequence with the light. It will create a sense of the movement and space of the sea, allowing it to roll into the city.”
The changing lights and sound on the pier will be determined in real-time by a sensor. Each wave that passes through will trigger the sensor and lights/sound will respond according to the wave size and intensity.
“The installation will also respond to the ripple effect made by a person jumping off the bombing platform.”
City Transformation Committee Chair Larry Baldock says the installation will be an added attraction to the city centre and drawcard to the waterfront in the evening.
‘Wash' begins at dusk today, and will operate from dusk till dawn each day.