Miguel Chevalier has unveiled a fourteen-meter-high light sculpture suspended beneath the atrium’s glass roof of Beaugrenelle Paris shopping centre. This sculpture-installation, dubbed Orbites, is composed of nine aluminum rings covered with LED lights. The rings, from 1.5 to 3 meters in diameter, are arranged in a cascade. They are like a juggler’s rings stopped in mid-flight.
This work is a first for the artist. It was conceived specifically for Beaugrenelle and echoes the atrium’s architecture, which is composed at each level of an ellipse. The circle—the figure of modern abstraction—also serves here as a veiled reference to those artists who, from Marcel Duchamp’s bicycle wheel to Alexander Calder’s mobiles, introduced movement into twentieth-century sculpture.
Thanks to the LEDs covering the sculpture and to a specific computer program, infinite choreographies in colored light are generated in real-time. They bring these nine rings to life while continually transforming the volume of the sculpture. Surprising visual experiences are created while playing with the circularity and height of this sculpture-installation.
Waves of light embracing all the colors of the color wheel move in continuous flux as they circulate from one ring to another, cross each other and wander off on multiple chance paths. These flowing lines become the metaphorical image for the multiplicity of data generated each day that weave together our environment and circulate nonstop at an ever more rapid pace.