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Light work of stretched dimensions
Light work of stretched dimensions

American artist Jim Campbell has turned technology into poetry with Scattered Light, his temporary public artwork in Kings Park.

Campbell has combined the romance of old-fashioned light globes with computer-generated film effects - all with a low-carbon footprint.

Campbell and an assistant sawed the tops off nearly 1600 globes and replaced the filaments with energy-efficient LEDs running on half the power needed to operate a toaster.

Scattered Light works as a three-dimensional 16m x 6m x 6m "screen" showing figures bustling through New York's Grand Central Station.

"It started as an experiment to take a two-dimensional image and stretch it into three dimensions and see what would happen," the former Silicon Valley electrical engineer said.

"If people stop, get out of their cars and spend a few minutes with it, that's how I would define being successful. It completely changes what it is, depending on your perspective and distance."

Scattered Light captivates on many levels. Standing 30m away, the effect is of a low-resolution movie as the lights pulsate to a computer program. Positioned among the globes, it feels like being inside a floating constellation confined within an aquarium. Wander around it and the images of people warp into abstraction.

Scattered Light runs each night from 7.30pm to midnight on the west side of Fraser Avenue, the main entrance road to Kings Park, until March 2.