Journey into Day For Night's striking light installations

Sunday, December 18, 2016 10:30PM
Thousands of music and art fans descended upon downtown Houston for the Day For Night festival.


HOUSTON - It's easy to forget how important light is -- it surrounds us constantly, helping us find our way through the world. The holidays serve as a festive reminder of the importance of light, as we deck the halls for Christmas, light the candles of the Hanukkah menorah and celebrate Diwali, the festival of lights.

At the Day For Night festival this weekend, however, a different kind of light took center stage. As DJs and musical acts from all different genres hit the stage to entertain the masses, striking displays of light took over nearly two entire floors of the old Barbara Jordan Post Office downtown.

Take a journey into four of this year's most impressive installations.

Shoplifter
Shoplifter, also known as Hrafnhildur Arnardottir, is an Icelandic artist living in New York. She is known for her sculptures, murals and installations crafted with -- what else -- human hair (and, on occasion, synthetic hair).

Day For Night: Shoplifter Installation


Arnardottir's Day For Night installation was true to form, with a massive swaths of cotton candy-like materials hanging from the walls and ceiling. Throughout the event, a kaleidoscope of brilliant colors danced across the material from a nearby projector.

In her bio, Arnardottir boasts that her art explores themes of self-image, vanity and beauty. This installation is no exception, as evidenced by the seemingly incessant stream of selfies taken at the toes of Arnardottir's cotton candy paradise.

Bardo
The Bardo installation, designed by Michael Fullman of VT Pro Design, transports viewers out of the post office building and into an alternate reality that is part dance floor, part dream and part intergalactic journey, yet wholly amazing.

Day For Night: Bardo installation

Marked by dramatic beams of brilliantly colored light, the installation is described as "an exploration of presence and absence in a nondescript location [where] vectors of light track you through darkness."


Highline
Nonotak returns to Day For Night for the second year in a row after displaying their VOLUME installation in 2015. Much of the work from duo Noemi Schipfer and Takami Nakamoto makes uses of mirrors, and Highline is no exception.
Day For Night: High Line installation

Vaguely reminiscent of a massive floor-to-ceiling window, the installation makes use of a "fractured line of light, reflections and sound to bounce space off of itself."

Outlines
A striking geometric display of hard, red beams of light, Outlines dares the viewer to "face the grid and trespass into your imaginary boundaries." The grid, however, proves difficult to pin down, coming and going as it pleases and making the daring journey beyond one's boundaries even more difficult.
Day For Night: Outlines

When fully illuminated, however, the elusive, glowing grid taunts the viewer, begging him to come crashing through to destroy the boundaries that he sets for himself.

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