Artists to brighten up Waller Creek in Austin with illuminated installations
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Artists to brighten up Waller Creek in Austin with illuminated installations

The sixth edition of Creek Show in Austin, United States, will display light-based art installations by six design teams, from November 7–17, 2019.

by Sukanya Garg Oct 31, 2019

For the 2019 edition of the Creek Show, six design teams have been selected to create light-based installations that will be displayed along Waller Creek. The installations will include Aurora by 1909B, Downstream Upcycle by Design Workshop, The Ghost Boat by Nelsen Partners, LightHouse by Norma + Sunny, Meander by Frankev, and String Theory by Boka Powell.

Downstream Upcycle, Design Workshop | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
Downstream Upcycle, Design Workshop Image Credit: Courtesy of Design Workshop

An annual show of interactive light-based art installations, the Creek Show takes place along Waller Creek in Austin, Texas. In its sixth edition now, this year the show will take place between 9th St. and 12th St. from November 7–17, 2019. The community is invited to walk along Waller Creek between 9th and 12th Streets to view the art designed to bring attention to the future revitalisation of Waller Creek, and its transformation into a series of urban parks.

The Ghost Boat, Nelsen Partners | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
The Ghost Boat, Nelsen Partners Image Credit: Courtesy of Nelsen Partners

The Creek Show showcases local Austin architects, landscape architects, artists, and designers chosen through an open Call for Ideas. Each year, artists explore different themes related to Waller Creek that range from hydrology to history and beyond. While the main attraction remains the impressive artistic creations, attendees also enjoy live music, different varieties of food, and interactive activities.

Light House, Norma + Sunny | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
Light House, Norma + Sunny Image Credit: Courtesy of Norma + Sunny

The annual event highlights Waller Creek’s impact on Austin’s social, cultural, and ecological future. For this year’s selection of installations, the work Aurora designed by 1909B will include Brooks Anderson, Bruno Canales, Mitch Flora, James Holliday, Zach Lyons, Andrew Mitchell, Will Powell, and Nolan Thomas. The work will present shifting perceptions of light, shadow and sound. It will encompass identical luminaries imposed on the creek bed along with a grid of LEDs extending over the creek. The changing constellation of light and its interplay with water is intended to raise questions of harmony and dissonance between the natural and the synthetic.

m e a n d e r, by Frankev | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
m e a n d e r, by Frankev Image Credit: Courtesy of Frankev

LightHouse by designers Norma Yancey, AIA and Sunny Schneberger will encompass a house made with prismatic lights, reflecting over the water to create a dual light house structure. Meander by Frankev encompassing designers Frances Peterson and Kevin Sullivan is a light installation, which mimics a walk inside a forest, except one that is made of vertical blue lights instead of trees.

String Theory, Boka Powell | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
String Theory, Boka Powell Image Credit: Courtesy of Boka Powell

String Theory, another light installation in the 2019 roster, will be designed by Boka Powell, whose team includes James Cornetet, Franco Palomo and Miren Urena. The designers explore the harmony of water and light through a colourful lens. The rainbow colours of the installation reflect in the water, not only symbolising the act of reflecting back, but the continuous twists of the installation itself, symbolising life’s twists and turns. The soft movement of the harmonious strings just like the water of the Waller Creek, together with the interplay of colour and light resemble the many shades of life’s journey.

Aurora, 1909B | Creek Show 2019 | STIRworld
Aurora, 1909B Image Credit: Courtesy of 1909B

The event has been organised by the non-profit Waller Creek Conservancy, which oversees the creek's redevelopment.

There will be a preview party on November 6, 2019. The ticketed event will be held to raise funds to make the event possible. The installations can be visited for free between 6 and 10 pm daily during the 11-night light display. All are invited to visit the creek, enjoy the installations, and connect with the ongoing transformation of the area. This family-friendly event continues to grow in popularity; it attracted over 50,000 visitors from all over Austin last year.

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About Author

Sukanya Garg

Sukanya Garg

Garg is an artist and writer with a Masters degree in Public Policy from Duke University, USA. She has been involved in research, planning and execution of gallery exhibitions and external projects in collaboration with curators. Her writing has been published in several art magazines, journals and as part of curatorial notes and catalogues, and her work has been showcased in multiple exhibitions.

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