The above sketches were created as part of our proposal for Cloud Glazing, a public art project in the Kansas City International Airport where we were commissioned finalists. The sketches and project were inspired by barrier-grid animations. The location we were selected for is a 500 ft. long connector that moves people from the two main terminal buildings. The connector is only about 50 feet wide and has people movers on both sides. We thought it would interesting to use the captive perspective of visitors and the people movers to animate a series of 10 cloud like forms hanging form the ceiling.

Fragment of Ombro-Cinéma Film no. 2

Pattern interfearance

The animation effect created by a barrier-grid animation is generated by interlacing a set of images (frames) and then moving a line screen over the interlaced image. In our case we would be using a set of hanging nylon straps as the line screen. Knowing that this would result in as much of an animated affect as animated pattern interference from various angles. We chose a more abstract content for the images. We generated prismatic spectrums that each had different centers to create the set of images to interlace for each cloud. The connector space has a quite neutral material pallet and we thought a surprising animated pattern of vivid color would be quite nice as visitors pass through the space.

Each cloud form is made by generating centenary curves across the silhouette of the cloud in plan. These curves are used to cut white nylon straps to a specific length. We used a machine that cuts and seals nylon straps to a specific length.

Diagram showing the interlacing of the images and how the catenary curves were generated.

Nylon strap cutting machine

The interlaced images for each cloud were mapped and UV printed directly onto the acoustical tiles being used in the airport.