Winter Lights Festival Cameo no. 3: An exploration of light, sound, touch and technology

For the second year in a row, there will be a community of Portlanders gathering at OMSI for the Winter Lights Festival—an event that illuminates the city’s waterfront with contemporary light-based art installations along with interactive performances and activities.

But this year is about more than just light. In November, a unique team of local companies were brought together to create something that would engage the audience’s multiple senses.

This team was composed of architects, fabricators, technologists and musicians across five companies— all with the shared goal of blending advanced materials and technology with nature, warmth and human touch.

Uncorked Studios along with Piano Push Play, dotdotdash, Willis + Dupont and ZGF Architects came together to make Cameo no. 3.

So what is it? 

The team utilized DuPont’s Corian solid surface material, which is typically used for kitchen countertops, and made a few structures that have laser-etched patterns with embedded LED lights in them. A series of touch-sensitive podiums stand in front of these structures and encourage attendees to interact with the installation as a group or individually. As they do, a unique music and light experience begin—with each individual’s touch triggering different tracks and sequences.

Why teamwork and collaboration matter 

As with any interactive exhibit or installation we work on, there are many components to account for, dependencies to outline, and work streams to define.

All of the magic for this project was made possible because of the diverse set of skills and talents contributed by the five companies involved. What’s amazing is that it was a completely organic collaboration, where no one had an exact role from the start. The group just came together to create something by Portlanders for Portland.

So what did Uncorked do? 

So, while Piano Push Play was composing the music, dotdotdash was coding the light show to work with the podiums, and ZGF was building the podiums and structures. All at the same time, the team here at Uncorked was figuring out the best way to design the interaction experience, as well as physically adding in a variety of sensors to make each podium interactive.

And voila, you have an installation.

In the end, this project brought together a diverse team of Portland companies who collaborated in an organic way to create an exciting installation that explores the intersection of sound, rhythm, light and social interaction—situated against the backdrop of the Portland cityscape.

So please join us on February 2-4 at OMSI, as the Portland community comes together, to see our creation along with some truly impressive work from other artists and makers across the region.

To read more about what we did for design and development on this project, check out our blog over the next few weeks for a post from our team.

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