Giant dust particles | icon 052 | October 2007

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Giant dust particles appear to float above the courtyard of the Clarks shoe company’s headquarters in Somerset, south-west England. The installation of thousands of metal discs attached to wires was designed by London-based design practice Roso.

The work was inspired by the way beams of light were reflected in the dusty air when Roso partners Rolf Kundsen and Sophie Nielsen visited the site – a dark, awkward space, 25m long by seven metres wide and four storeys high. “We scaled up the notion of dust particle,” says partner Rolf Kundsen. “The ambition was to make light inhabit the courtyard, not fill it.”

The courtyard walls were painted white and the ground was covered in black asphalt to provide the backdrop for the centrepiece: two imaginary beams of light that cross the space, made of 15,000 custom die-cut metallic discs attached to 72 stainless steel wires with 7,500 springs.

The installation responds to changes in the wind and light, dynamising the previously dingy space – on sunny days, the courtyard shimmers with thousands of reflections.
Roso won an informal competition organised by Lance Clark, a descendant of the shoe manufacturer’s founder and the curator of the company’s growing art collection.
Diego García Scaro

images Christoph Bolten

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