Author Archives: person

Liquid Facade

Liquid Facade


stretch Lycra, fiberglass rods. 35’ x 25’ x 3’

Location: Materials & Applications, Los Angeles, CA

Commissioned: M&A – a reverse-unveiling to announce the new research center

Inspired by the wrapped buildings of Christo and Jeanne-Claude and the stretch fabric interiors of Gisela Stromeyer, this facade presented a reverse unveiling of the new architecture and landscape research center, Materials & Applications. Programmed at night by rear-projected video.

Gateway to Los Angeles


Gateway to Los Angeles


Steel, aluminum, LEDs, electronics, concrete, stainless steel cablenet

Pergolas across two bridges: Los Angeles Street and Main Street, spanning the 101 Freeway in downtown Los Angeles 100′ feet each

Commissioned by the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs and CalTrans

The gateway grows the visual language of highway infrastructure into an organic form at the scale of natural phenomenon. Aluminum “nodes” embedded with LEDs fixed to the canopy illuminate at night reviewing data collected of the daily vibrations along the bridge.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess and Ned Kahn

Images by Oliver Hess

Live Forever


Firestation 94 facade installation 2011

Live Forever 


Origami sheet brass, LEDs, electronics, environmental sensors. 35’ x 18’ x 12’

Location: Firestation 94, Baldwin Village, Los Angeles

Commissioned by the Los Angeles Department of Cultural Affairs

Networked light-embedded brass origami sconces inspired by native cliff-dwelling Chalk Dudleya “Live Forever” plant, so-named because of its drought tolerance. This monitoring and alert system exploits the surface of the building in the way nature finds uses for voids.

Moisture-responsive lighting is an environmental monitoring system clinging to the facade. The rate lights scintillate across the building in response to ambient humidity is linked to fire risk. An ambient clue to fire danger levels to raise awareness.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess

Images by Mayoral Photo

Ukendt Beach



Ukendt Beach


Roof tiles, rubber liner, standard roofing lumber. 40’ x 8’ x 15’

Location: Copenhagen, Denmark

Commissioned: Instant Herlev Institute

This repurposing of roofing materials and techniques is a terra cotta roof tile deck descending into a captured rainwater “sea” in the front yard of a suburban home. An invitation to lounge on private property as though it were a public beach.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess

The Food Pyramid

The Food Pyramid


Rubber liner, Food-grade bins, rainwater, photovoltaic array, submersible pumps and lights, gravel, tomatoes, cilantro, onions, lettuce, tilapia, native marsh plants. 10’ x 12’ x 12’

Location: Los Aangeles County Museum of Art, CA

Commissioned by: LACMA for EATLACMA curated by Fallen Fruit

Taking cues from material and natural ecologies of Los Angeles, a vertical Fish Taco
Garden. Utilizing repurposed materials from industrialized food systems, the garden
cycles waste generated by one area of the Food Pyramid to feed the other parts.

Diners at the nearby museum cafe completed the cycle by purchasing fish food and feeding the fish. At the end of the exhibition, the entire pyramid was harvested and chefs prepared fish tacos for 100+ visitors while an aquatic puppet show was performed in the piece.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess

Wilmington Waves


Wilmington Waves


Stainless steel rod and hardware, LED programmable lights and anchors, electronics

Three bridges: Dimensions: 15′ x 100′ each.

Location: Wilmington Waterfront Park

Commissioned by: Port of Los Angeles, Wilmington, CA

Design, fabrication, and installation by artists Didier and Hess

Interactive lights bring a surging tide to the landlocked park. Imitating bioluminescent tides, these light assemblies are held in tension with cables; the strands are strong but quiver with the wind. The system synchronizes its display to real-time tidal data from the nearby port of Wilmington.

Topmost image by Oliver Hess

Orit Haj

Orit Haj


Monumental rammed earth, community token “artifacts”, concrete and bronze.

20′ x 6′ x 3′

Location: Vasquez Rocks State Park. LA County

Commissioned by Los Angeles County Art Commission

Using earth from the site excavation, the monument erodes revealing impacts of natural forces and humans. Residents rammed the earth and added artifacts in each layer of this slow-release time capsule. An embedded bronze sculpture will emerge last. Orit Haj, the title of this artwork, are words from the indigenous Tataviam language which translate to ‘river’ and ‘mountain’. Much the way the Tataviam culture and its language have dissolved into time leaving behind artifacts and legends in and around Vasquez Rocks, so too this artwork will transform and dissolve with time.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess, Rammed Earth Consultant / Contractor: Andreas Hessing

Awarded five signature scroll by Los Angeles County Commissioners for Orit Haj and “demonstrated service”.

Recognized as one of the 50 best public art projects in the 2012 Public Art Network Year in Review by Americans for the Arts

Here There Be Monsters

Here There Be Monsters


Materials: bamboo, rainwater, submersible pumps, electronics.

50′ x 45′ x 20′

Commissioned by: Materials & Applications

Rainwater captured from the roof of M&A’s building created a pond inhabited by “invisible creatures” — a unique and subtly responsive submerged system of jets that responded to the motions and gestures of visitors. A hyperboloid-shaped bamboo foot bridge spanned the aquatic habitat.

Collaboration with Oliver Hess, bridge by workshopLEVITAS