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The installation provides a symbolic counterpoint to a science-based exhibition that reveals the positive value of water to life and dangers to water sustainability. So we sought a public experience that might convey both the technological and the primal, bridge science and culture, veneration and caution. At the core of our transdisciplinary response is a three-dimensional array called SPLASH that evokes the dynamism, fragility and power contained in a single drop.
To give shape to this concept PROGRAM COLLECTIVE turned to particles software to simulate extreme physical forces (like gravity, wind, heat) acting on liquid water. We selected a visually provocative moment as the base for subsequent stages of realization. This fluid dynamics digital model was translated into mesh software and finally to solid software which allowed structural calculations needed to hang the array of 134 pieces from cables. The solid model was then 3D printed as a 1:20 prototype, which guided the final fabrication. Each of the 134 shapes comprising the SPLASH was “sculpted” through digital CAD-CAM cutting with smoothing and polishing and special mirror effect finishing.
The experience of SPLASH is complete with sound and visuals: they were conceived together to address site-specific challenges. Located in a 40-meter high space defined by a visually powerful double-helix of ramps, SPLASH provides a counterpoint whose scale and complexity can only be fully understood by the viewer in motion. As the public ascends the tower ramps this time/motion-based experience of SPLASH is augmented by ambient audio-visuals also by PROGRAM COLLECTIVE. Through public movement, perception, and discussion the relationship between parts of the hybrid reach momentary completion and meaning.