DIY Field

Artist: Germaine Koh
Program: Commission
Location: Central Park, near the corner of Ellice Avenue and Edmonton Street
Medium: Metal posts with interactive LED lights
Date: 2011

Description

DIY Field is an interactive grid of 38 pedestrian-scale light posts on a sloped piece of ground in Winnipeg's Central Park. In keeping with the themes of play developed throughout the park, each post's light and colour is controllable by park users, creating a flexible field that is configurable by individuals for emergent game play and other uses.

Each simple metal post contains energy-efficient RGB (red, green, blue) LED lights with three robust buttons to turn each colour channel on and off separately. Combinations of the three primary colours permit eight light colours per post: red, green, blue, yellow, cyan, magenta, white, and no light.

The poles recall game- and sports equipment such as pylons, slalom markers, goal posts, and signaling devices. They minimally articulate a space that is otherwise left open for the public to animate and invent uses. Besides creating a situation for play by giving users and residents a measure of control over the character and mood of the space, the project also communicates a vision of public space that is shaped by how it is used and negotiated by citizens in real life, as much by how it is planned.

Artist Biography

Germaine Koh is a Canadian visual artist based in Vancouver. Her conceptually-generated work is concerned with the significance of everyday actions, familiar objects and common places. She has exhibited at significant contemporary art centres such as the BALTIC Centre (Newcastle), De Appel (Amsterdam), Musée d'art contemporain de Montréal, Para/Site Art Space (Hong Kong), Frankfurter Kunstverein, Bloomberg SPACE (London), The Power Plant (Toronto), Seoul Museum of Art, Artspace (Sydney), The British Museum (London), the Contemporary Art Gallery (Vancouver), Plug In ICA (Winnipeg), Art Gallery of Ontario (Toronto), and the Liverpool, Sydney and Montréal biennials. Koh was a recipient of the 2010 VIVA Award in visual arts, and a finalist for the 2004 Sobey Art Award. Formerly an Assistant Curator of Contemporary Art at the National Gallery of Canada, she is also an independent curator and partner in the independent record label weewerk. 

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