A stunning Northern Lights display is built into YYC's newest skyscraper

Apr 23 2019, 6:30 pm

A dazzling display has graced Calgary’s skyline.

Telus Sky, one of the newest skyscrapers being built in downtown YYC, has been showing off its built-in LED public art installation as its construction nears completion.

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Titled “Northern Lights,” the LEDs are the work of renowned Canadian author and artist Douglas Coupland and were created to provide full-colour motion sequences along both the north and south facade of the tower.

“For me, it was a chance to create something very analog on a system that is very digital,” Coupland said on Telus Sky’s website.

“Like the building itself, there is an inherent contradiction, in that technology can be both a form of art as well as a tool for its creation.”

northern lights

Telus sky (telussky.com)

With 600 custom bulbs wrapping around the window frames of the already interestingly designed building, Northern Lights will work alongside a free downloadable app that will bring an interactive element to the installation.

Holding a smartphone or tablet up to the building’s facade will be able to uncover colour-specified messages, such as the date, time, or weather, and the website states that the messages could “become larger and quite elaborate as the technology allows for ingenuity.”

Once complete, the 16,000-sq-ft installation will become the largest piece of public art in the city.

While construction cranes still flank the new skyscraper, Northern Lights has been putting on a few preemptive shows for lucky onlookers, as seen below:

 

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