Hospitals bring out an array of emotions from people but the creators of a new reactive art installation are showing how their work can soothe and heal—particularly when people become the art.
In the elevator lobby on each floor at the new Eskenazi Health Center in Indianapolis, Ind., design principals Kyle Perry and Adam Beunte of PROJECTiONE have created Temporal Synapse, a media installation merging ACRYLITE® acrylic sheet, LED lighting and computer programming to conceptually interpret and display the physical movements of patients, visitors, and staff as brain waves.
“Hidden in the middle of each wall is a passive fish-eye camera,” explains Perry. “As people wait for the elevators, the camera picks up their motion. That motion is fed into a computer, which sends signals to hundreds of tiny LEDs. The lights illuminate behind the ACRYLITE® acrylic sheet and resemble cellular structures seen within the body. The LEDs slowly glow on and off in different parts of the display as people move and react to what they see, giving the impression of different synapses firing in the brain.”
PROJECTiONE turned to Meyer Plastics of Indianapolis to identify a product that offered endless design possibilities, excellent optical characteristics, and consistent light stability throughout its composition. “Using our CNC routers, we were able to sculpt the ACRYLITE® acrylic panels and machine different patterns within each cell,” Perry adds. “We also needed large quantities of ACRYLITE® acrylic for the project, and its affordability definitely made that possible. ACRYLITE® was the perfect solution for this challenge.”
The installation made its formal debut with the hospital’s opening in January 2014. “Temporal Synapse will spark conversations between strangers, or redirect a patient’s focus from what they’re going through, even if only temporarily. It will be both soothing and ambient, or lively and playful, but continually changing. The elevator lobbies will be a source of energy and life throughout the building,” said Perry.
“It never surprises me when designers choose ACRYLITE®,” says Antoinette Spages, Director of Marketing and Communications for Roehm’s Acrylic Polymers business line. “What is surprising are the ingenious ways ACRYLITE® is used. Temporal Synapse is one of the most unique examples and the fact that it’s part of a calming presence in a healing environment makes it all the more impressive.”
Location: Indianapolis, Indiana
Product: ACRYLITE® cast