As we approach the shortest day of the year, the hours of sunlight reduce and the sun is lower in the sky. Shadows extend further and further from their source, into the landscape.
We were commissioned by Charlie Gladstone and Hawarden Estate Experience to design and produce the installation for their winter 2021-2022 exhibition. 12 artists and designers took part, with works set across the farm shop grounds in Hawarden, North Wales.
Set across 1,962 sq m, we designed an interactive installation to encourage visitors to explore light and shadow during winter. Visitors can walk through the markers to measure the distance shadows fall on different days and times, highlighting how light changes throughout the year.
The installation comes to life visually through a grid-like framework of wood-stained markers signifying the distance the shadow is falling from the visitor. There are 16 markers set out in 10 m intervals, from 0 m to 50 m.
“Adam created something for us that is not only elegant (deceptively so) but also genuinely thought provoking. You need to look at it and then dive into it and try to figure it out. Take time and get involved; it will reveal itself and it’s great.”
Hawarden Estate Experience
The installation continues after sunset with spotlights sequenced to alternate, creating a pattern of light in place of the sun, enabling explorers to gain a new perspective of light and shadow.
Referencing the movement of the sun, the type rises across each face of the post. The type also connects from one face to the other, allowing it to be read from all sides.
The ground impact was a careful consideration for the installation. By using a ground spike, more commonly found in fencing, the installation has strength — when removed from the site, it doesn’t leave a trace. It’s similar to a giant tent peg, which ties in well with the field’s purpose for camping during the summer months.
We utilised UK-grown hemp as a hemp fibre panel for the lettering and numbers — one of the first applications of its kind. The material was chosen for its sustainability and reddy-brown colour which contrasts with the warmth of wood-stain beneath. Each component has a unique patina and structure to it, especially when the sunlight catches it.