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Sonic Rings: London Olympics 2012
Weymouth, UK
Summer, 2012
In collaboration with the Arts University/Bournemouth Architecture School

“Sonic Rings: UK Olympics” was composed of 16 columns placed within two concentric circles. Each column housed a series of interactive sensors, computer-controlled full-color LED lights and an audio speaker. The system was controlled by a computer in a nearby “soundhouse.” As people touched the columns, lights were triggered and a sound-score, composed of melodic and environmental sounds, played. This installation ran 24 hours a day next to the Media Center for all the Maritime 2012 Olympic events.

In the summer of 2011, Christopher Janney lectured at AUCB on the history of his work. He also conducted a seminar to explore with interested students both the artistic and architectural concepts inherent in this work. A group of 3rd-year architecture students under Professor Simon Beeson’s direction continued to explore these concepts and ideas throughout the remainder of the year. At the invitation of the University and the Olympic Arts Committee, the opportunity to present this project at the UK Olympics was an ideal setting to explore these concepts with the students.

There is a theory in urban design titled “urban alienation”; that our cities and city events are so large, people can not relate to one another. Architects often are charged with designing at the scale of the building or plaza and are not able to bring a design down to the scale of the individual to catalyze ACTUAL human interaction. Janney’s work explores ways to bring human scale back to the urban condition- through form and interactive components.