Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Photoreactive Sun Canopy - A Fusion of Architecture and Technology

Summer has officially kicked in, and people are out buying shades and canopies to beta the heat. But no one would have dreamed of a better canopy than the designers at Milan's 2008 Furniture fair! Made out of funky material that creates illusions of colors on reflecting sunlight, this photoreactive sun canopy is more like a piece of architecture than just a refuge from the sun! Termed as Project OR, this intriguing piece of art wowed the audience at Milan.

Visitors to this year’s Salone del Mobile (Milan Furniture Fair 2008)were in for a treat when they walked into a quaint Italian courtyard on Milan’s Via Borgospesso to witness Christoph Klemmt’s stunning vortex-shaped OR installation. Composed out of polygonal, polypropylene, photoreactive segments which respond to ultra-violet light, OR’s captivating powers lie in its capacity to adapt its appearance to changes in weather and daylight. Its "skin" emits flourishing hues of blue and green when exposed to sunlight and maintains a subtle translucent white when the installation is overcome by shade. Best of all, OR’s effects are not limited to daytime - at night, it generates ample atmosphere by becoming a "psychedelic chandelier" flooding its surrounding areas with a dramatic disco of lights.

OR is the first time that photoreactive technology has been used on an architectural scale. The ecological structure is a step in exploring the possibilities of photoreactive materials in the fields of furniture and design. The beauty of OR is its constant interaction with the elements. Each moment of the day is unique. The installation was a collaborative effort by architect Klemmt and fellow London-based designers Ran Ankori, Francesco Brenta, Maya Carni, Laura Micalizzi and Elisa Oddone. For more details and a photo gallery, visit Project OR.


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