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Field Visit

Event ID 613900

Category Recording

Type Field Visit


Kinetic Sculpture.

The kinetic 'light tower' which was in the centre of the roundabout in the middle of Picardy Place, comprised a helix of steel containing 96 cold cathode neon tubes, the whole structure supported by three concrete pillars at the base. It had 24 circuits, each of four neon tubes. Nine circuits were red and blue tubes, fifteen were dark blue. Wind determined the circuit selection, and wind speed determined the rate of change via an anemometer and wind vane at the top. Dimmers varied the light intensity; over a million colour pattern combinations were possible.

The kinetic sculpture was originally intended to be part of Edinburgh's Christmas light decorations in 1973. Because of a power strike the permanent switch-on was delayed till April 1974. It was then beset by technical problems and was often out of order. In May 1983 it was dismantled and put into storage. In November 1993 it was given to Morris and Steedman, architects, who acquired it for their clients Grampian Enterprises.

Design period : 1973

Year of unveiling : 1973

Information from Public Monuments and Sculpture Association (PMSA Work Ref : EDIN1477)

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