Thumbnail Image Text
1 of 5

Firefly biosphere (oceaning), 2022


light intensity


This small polyhedron, the product of decades of research undertaken at Studio Olafur Eliasson, is one of a series of sixteen related hanging sculptures. Three concentric polyhedrons, one nestled inside the other, work together to create an elaborate array of geometric shapes, shadows, and colours that are projected onto the surrounding walls.  The tinted-glass faces of the outermost form – an eight-sided solid known as a rhombic dodecahedron – are curved outwards to create a segmented sphere or bubble. Within this outer skin, the two interior forms, whose geometries are loosely correlated, turn slowly on a motor. The first of the two is made of semi-reflective panes of handblown glass, while the inner-most is composed of various tones of colour-effect-filter glass, a special material that reflects light of a single colour while allowing the remaining light to pass through. LED spots integrated into the outer frame illuminate the core and are reflected back out by the inner forms. The light passes through the panes and narrow gaps between the glass and the stainless-steel frame to cast colourful, complex shapes and shadows onto the surrounding space.

Coloured glass (purple), colour-effect filter glass (yellow), silver, stainless steel, paint (black), LED lights, aluminium, brass, motor, control unit