Feature Friday: Ai Weiwei’s “Forever Bicycles”
Recently, The Contemporary Austin contacted us wanting lighting to help feature their new sculpture, “Forever Bicycles“. Ai Weiwei is the Chinese artist behind the sculpture. He is an artist and a political activist who has been persecuted in his home country of China for speaking out against the governments actions.
“Forever Bicycles” is 32 feet high and includes nearly 1,300 bikes. The bikes form an archway where viewers can walk under it and look up to what is described as an optical track of the eye. This particular structure resonates with Ai Weiwei because growing up in China, his family was not wealthy enough to afford even one bicycle but now, he has more than a thousand to share with others.
This installation was tricky in that the sculpture is located in a park with no power source on site. We worked in conjunction with a nearby housing development in order to get power for the lighting. Joel Mayor, the lighting designer on this project, chose to use cool white lamps in the fixtures to enhance the stainless steel of these particular bikes and made sure to utilize flush mount fixtures since there is quite a bit of foot traffic in and around the sculpture.