Himalaya Place
Monumental sundial with straight fictive style

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Realisation (images/scenario) : Emmanuel Layani – Michel Jeltsch

Creation of a sundial in tribute to Padré HIMALAYA in Sorède (France, 66), a gnomon(dial) with a straight fictive style on Himalaya place, this work was imagined by the artist and sculptor MARC-ANDRÉ 2 FIGUERES.

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The HIMALAYA project is based upon the edification of a signal playing a role in a sundial system that would translate, in the vision of its conceptor, the opening on symbolic pictures, the pictures which were at the origin of the solar reasearches carried out in Sorède.

The technical conception of the main element, structured around a very high vertical axis, assures to the whole structure its stability.

According to the different hours of exposure, a circular opening (the shape of a funnel) inside the projected shadow of the style is repercuted on a vertical wall according to specific trigonometric calculation. It receives the beam of light in the shadow projected by the style, indicating the different steps of the solar cycle according to selected localisations.

The HIMALAYA project, presents a structuring image of the city of SOREDE, able to comfort its deliberately innovative orientation, and illustrating the origin of the development of the solar technologies.

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Abridged Description of the Project

Investigation of urban territories as a space of time representation.

For MA2F, the aim is to introduce a new conception of creation, associating Arts with other techniques that allow the exploration of entire new fields. He identifies, demonstrates and analyses how it is possible to paint or carve with other tools than with paintbrushes and colors ; transparency, light, solar rays, randomness can become chisel, press, tools, paintbrush in the artist’s game, and reinvent space in a totally different manner, different each time. The HIMALAYA project is a sculpture that allies Art and research, technology and science, and enlightens a scientific challenge : the use of the sun revolution in service of Universal time.

This realisation uses the place as a gnomon (sundial) and plays with light beams, shadows and their movements. HIMALAYA was the nickname of Manuel Antonio Gomes because of his height. The project is inspired by this feature of the Padre and implements on site the symbol of this gigantism thanks to the sundial but also refers to the first experimentations carried out by HIMALAYA in Sorède.

This sculpture / sundial is also helpful to locate visually HIMALAYA place in Sorède’s sky.

The sun is a central vector in this process. It symbolizes the energy whose power can either modify or even desintegrate the existing structures, either generate life. From a mathematical point of view, it allows to measure the time flow.

The final work illustrates each of these three functions through a multidimensional sculpture, with its plastic and aestethics aspects and with its mobility according to the solar revolution. The drivers and passers-by that circulate inside or around the palce play have an entertaining interaction with the work through the play of lights and shadows. This sculpture was designed In Situ, specifically for the HIMALAYA place. It is particularly adapted to the installation on a wall because it proposes a circular observation whether you are mobile or static, by car or on foot.

The work stages this spot according to daily sun revolution. A driver that would circulate daily around it would see, as hours pass, the movement of projected shadows according the principle of a gnomon (sundial).

The representation is different each day. The work is mobile, living, as well as static. As there is no mechanical movement inside, it isn’t therefore subject to deteriorations.

Last but not least, the project exploits the webcam technology as the sculpture is to be connected online to the Town Hall website so that Sorède’s time can be consulted “live”…

Project Environment

Marc-André 2 FIGUERES, MPhD in Arts and Art Sciences, Research Director in the laboratory ARTS, has experienced for several years the relations between Art and Technology for solar applications and the reading of time.


VIDEO >> Himalaya

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