Here There and Everywhere: The Art Of Collaboration
Place: Part III   Ecological

Photo Credit: David Newsom Photography

SunFlowers, an Electric Garden
Mags Harries • USA • Artist
Lajos Héder • Hungary • Artist/Architect
Megan Crigger • USA • Public Art Consultant, Director of Art in Public Places, City of Austin
Ann Graham • USA • Project Facilitator in Austin
Leo Lopez • USA • Project Manager, Catellus Development Group
Brad Patterson • USA • Structural Engineer
TBG Landscape Architects • USA • Design Team Collaborator
Texas Solar Power, Inc. • USA • Solar Specialists
Dennis Steel Inc. • USA • Structural Steel Fabricators

“All of our energy is originally solar energy;” Harries and Héder write, “it created our world and fuels our activities. For our future, it is a question of how we capture and use solar energy. The SunFlowers capture solar energy and play with sunlight, getting to the heart of the matter. SunFlowers was initiated to mask loading docks from the view on I-35. Instead of merely mitigating the site, we made it into an attraction and an important facility. We wanted to create something new and fitting for the Mueller Redevelopment and for the City of Austin with sustainability and environmental stewardship as a priority."

The 15 SunFlowers that form the Electric Garden are sculptural solar collectors that generate solar energy to be used for lighting at night. The additional energy that they produce is fed into the electrical grid. During the day they provide a shaded grove for a pedestrian path and at night the LED’s in the SunFlowers’ stamens glow with blue light. The project includes a web component that monitors the generated power.

Mueller Redevelopment, 1-35 Highway • Austin, Texas, USA
• Permanently installed 2009