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London’s newest gallery becomes a kaleidoscope by day and a lighthouse by night !

Shade SimonHeijdens NowGallery - By CharlesEmerton - portrait LoRes

Simon Heijdens: Shade through to 19th December 2014 NOW Gallery The Gateway Pavilions Pavilion Square Greenwich Peninsula London SE10 0SQ @NOWGallery NOW Laters: This Friday/Saturday September 26th and 27th, Florence Peake will perform CONSTRUCT SHIFT

Simon Heijdens uses cutting-edge technology to animate NOW gallery’s space through clever manipulation of sunlight and the prevalent Greenwich Peninsula wind. Heijdens’ most expansive and ambitious work to date, this installation consists of an intelligent, computer controlled skin wrapping the NOW Gallery’s 7m-tall windows. Choreographed by the elements, the skin is made up of 1920 triangular cells, each ‘programmed’ to react to wind, creating a kaleidoscope of light and shadow, translating the unplanned natural timeline of the outdoor to the indoor space. By night, the building converts into a ‘lighthouse’, with interior light beaming out through the continuously changing skin, echoing the nearby Trinity Buoy and becoming a new local beacon.

Both a formidable sculptural work and an invisible technical feat, Heijdens looks at the impact of manmade structures on the natural landscape, opening up the built environment to coincidence. “Nature is becoming rare in our daily life” says Heijdens, “In the way our urbanising world is generally built and planned, our everyday surroundings have become perpetual and static through conditioned climates and 24 hour lighting. When unpredictable natural elements such as a lifting breeze, a sudden shower, or a setting sun are planned out of our surroundings, the timeline of our everyday is lost.”

Photographer Credit : Ed Reeve
Conceived as part of the on-going regeneration of Greenwich Peninsula, NOW Gallery sits within a hub designed by architects Marks Barfield moments from the O2 and North Greenwich station. The hub, formed of two curved glass pavilions linked by a patinated brass-edged canopy – longer than the wing span of an Airbus A380 – contains NOW Gallery, a cafe, restaurant, sky bar and charcuterie. As visitors emerge from North Greenwich tube station and look to the right they will see the pavilions, the art installations within and also through them to the Emirates cable car along a line of latitude.

As part of the on-going programme to celebrate Heijden’s work, NOW Gallery are curating a series of Friday Late openings – NOW Laters – on the last Friday of every month. This Friday/Saturday September 26th and 27th, Florence Peake will perform CONSTRUCT SHIFT, a new sculptural performance work with music by ReviveHer’s Henry Bennett.

Jemima Burrill, NOW Gallery curator, said

“In the last six months we have seen two conjoined buildings by Marks Barfield go up before our eyes. A new creative space has appeared – a galley like a giant fish bowl which will display three exciting and unparalleled installations a year exploring the diversity of art and design. It is the perfect place to introduce Simon Heidjen’s work which has a grand subtly that surprises and delights.”

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