The Liquid Lens was created for the Gordon Head Recreation Center Leisure Pool extension in Victoria BC. The piece was installed in the summer of 1996 to coincide with the opening of the commonwealth games of that year. The piece was developed and constructed over a two year period and included many technical and material aspects. The center piece of the installation was the 'liquid lens' and the 'cloud canopy array'.
The Liquid Lens creates its own lighting effect, a specially designed micro circuit controls the motion of motors which modulate the surface frequency (vibration) of a clear liquid suspended in a transparent tank. The input signal to the system originates from a pre-recorded tape, specially designed sound effects are transformed into mechanical movement through the circuit & motors into standing wave patterns in the liquid. The frequencies and transitions of frequencies are projected by multi-coloured diacroic filtered light onto the overhead 'canopy array' stretched into the super-structure of the roof.
Other components of the installation included 'diffraction tiles' and 'heat sensitive tiles'. The diffraction tiles were created from a finely machined metalized plastic material which collects & scatters light. This material was laminated between a composite substrate and a surface layer of glass. The tiles were placed in the pools and around areas of the pool decks. The created a beautiful shimmering lighting effect underwater and on the decks as one moves around in the space. The heat tiles created from liquid crystal . These tiles would change colour as they changed temperature, constructed in the same manor as the diffraction tiles, the heat sensitive tiles were placed in steam rooms and pool deck showers.