Artist Jen Lewin transforms public space with large-scale, interactive installations — from geometric colorfully-lit leaping pads to giant laser harps open to all. At TEDxMileHigh, she explains her impetus for creating these pieces, saying, “[My] art is public art that [everyone] can actually participate in together … and [that] can really change a space.” Public space belongs to the public, she says, but that doesn’t always mean it fosters interaction between its visitors. Interactive art changes that.
Her work “The Pool” is a prime example of this. An installation that looks like a giant field of glowing lily pads, “The Pool” is a playground of colored platforms that respond to human interaction, creating patterns and giant “pools of light” as people touch, walk and jump on them.
“The point of it,” Lewin says, “is when ["The Pool"] goes into a public space — you step on these platforms, enter into this pool of light and you have this really wonderful experience … You see people taking pictures of themselves. You see them laughing, playing with their friends and you see them connecting. And this is in a park that would be a lovely park [on its own], but now there’s this incredible, dynamic, wonderful community experience.”
“We’ve worked hard to create work like this that can really be interacted with and really be in the public space,” she says. “Whether it’s dancing … composing music … diving in and playing in a huge pool of light … as we say in my studio, please touch the art.”
Watch Lewin’s whole talk below:
Insight from the TEDx office — why we like this talk:
The speaker is an artist who gives an engaging look into both her art and her medium — interactive sculpture. Her idea — that art can inspire not only human interaction, but also human collaboration and revival of public space — is supported by reception to her pieces and through stunning documentation of the pieces themselves. The talk is direct, succinct and full of striking visuals.