Art Installation Will Light Up Welcome Center in LOVE Park Redesign

Seattle-based art duo Haddad|Drugan will have the building looking like some kind of hovering spacecraft.

Chromoscope rendering courtesy of Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

“Chromoscope” rendering courtesy of Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

When the redesign of LOVE Park is complete, the already-futuristic-looking Welcome Center will look even more like a hovering spacecraft thanks to a $230,000 art installation that will have red, yellow and green lights beaming from its ceiling.

The project — a ceiling mural called Chromoscope — was dreamed up by Seattle-based art duo Haddad|Drugan (Laura Haddad and Tom Drugan). It keeps in tact the pavilion’s lantern-like lighting scheme, but adds in layers of colorful aluminum panels to create a funky abstract design made up of patterns and symbols inspired by Philly’s artistic and local history.

The lighting and design work together to create a different experience depending on the time of day or what color is illuminating the ceiling. In the daylight or when white light is used, for instance, all of the layered images will be visible at once, really showcasing the abstract design as a whole. When the sun sets, however, the “pattern becomes animated and kaleidoscopic with the projection of colored light onto the ceiling,” reads a description from Creative Philadelphia. Each of those colors will bring out different patterns in the design.

When the ceiling glows blue, you’ll see a tree-canopy pattern

Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

Red light will reveal stars

love-park-redesign-welcome-center - 1

Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

And green light, water

love-park-redesign-welcome-center - 2

Haddad|Drugan and Kieran Timberlake

“We envision the vibrant ceiling as a beacon drawing the public into the Welcome Center, both day and night,” say Haddad|Drugan, who have contributed equally dazzling, site-specific installations in citis like San Francisco, Denver and Nashville. “The kinetic animating lighting effects on the mural will bring magic to Love Park. The astonishing effects of simply adding colored light to a colored mural will add a sense of wonder to people’s experience of the landscape at large.”

The whole thing will look all the more gorgeous after the Welcome Center goes through a complete renovation. Margot Berg, public art director for the Office of Arts, Culture and the Creative Economy (OACCE), tells me that “the interior space will be redesigned, and the glass will be replaced with better, high-performance state-of-the-art glass.” So the building will look more transparent overall, giving it that cool UFO vibe.

Chromoscope was made possible thanks to a trio of local organizations: the OACCE, who funded the project via their Percent for Art Program, Philadelphia Parks and Recreation, and InterPark, LLC. Local architecture firm Kieran Timberlake (who was behind the Dilworth Park redesign) helped with design support.

For more on the artsier aspects of the redesign, go here. Our sister blog Property has details on LOVE Park’s overall revamping.

Keep up to date with our local arts and events coverage. Here’s how: