October 19th, 2009
Living Light by David Benjamin and Soo-in Yang (aka “The Living“) is a permanent outdoor pavilion in the heart of Seoul with a dynamic skin that glows and blinks in response to both data about air quality and public interest in the environment. The skin of the pavilion is a giant map of Seoul with the 27 neighborhood (gu) boundaries redrawn based on existing air quality sensors of the Korean Ministry of Environment—each shape in this new map encloses the air closest to one of the sensors. Then the map illuminates to become an interactive, environmental building facade. Citizens can enter the pavilion or view it from nearby streets and buildings, and they can text message the building and it will text them back.
This structure in a public park not only provides a canopy and a tactile enclosure, it also suggests that a building facade itself can become a new kind of public space. It can offer important real-time information about our shared resources and our collective concerns. The Living are also showing their work at the current Toward the Sentient City exhibition in New York. See previous post for more details.