Science

Kinetic sculptures and sound circuits: building solar-powered art at Pioneer Works

In 2014, multimedia artist Alex Nathanson co-curated a project called Nightlight that turned a garden in Queens into an interactive light exhibit. The team had hoped to power the exhibit by running a cable out, but that turned out not to be feasible, and “solar power was the solution.”

Since then, Nathanson has been interested in the intersection of solar power and art. He managed Sunset, a Central Park art installation that consisted of a solar-powered ice cream truck, and he now teaches classes on art and engineering. During two recent Sundays, students at Pioneer Works, an art space in Brooklyn, learned to make sun-powered robots and low-voltage sound sculptures.

The upcycled solar cells used in the projects.

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