Tectonic

Artists: Sean Virili (Australia) / Justin Hartany (Australia) / Matt Fung (Australia) / Jamie Bastoli (Australia)

Tonic water, bottles and elbow grease are the key ingredients to powering this beautiful and sustainable lighting installation suspended above a Sydney laneway.

The constantly moving, luminescent form is constructed of 1500 upcycled PET bottles filled with tonic water. The quinine in the tonic interacts with invisible ultraviolet rays to emit a glowing blue light at night.

This is the second iteration of the sculpture: a smaller prototype was developed in 2014 and proved the functionality and reliability of the technology. The artists have taken the 2016 version further, making the sculpture much bigger—with the design now consuming 150 litres of tonic water—and consequently emitting a much stronger and brighter luminescence.

The presence of any airflow provides a subtle yet uninterrupted oscillation for the sculpture. Relying on its environment, the constant motion of the bottles makes for a beautiful undulating effect, allowing the suspended features to engage in movement throughout the duration of its commission, without being powered.

All materials used in the production of the installation, including the 1500 PET bottles, can either be fully recycled or are biodegradable, while the energy consumption is kept at a bare minimum by the use of LED technology.

 

Country represented by installation: Australia