Ballroom Luminoso is a series of six brilliantly lit color-changing changing chandeliers. Drawing from the formal elegance of the freeway underpass and the cultural currents of the surrounding neighborhoods, the piece transforms a forgotten space into one that connects the community.
Each globe contains a custom-designed LED light fixture, which casts sharply detailed shadows. The chandeliers paint the underpass with complex color patterns and ethereal lighting, refashioning the space into a majestic ballroom-cum-shadow theater. Melding grandeur with a sense of neighborhood rejuvenation, the sculptures weld recycled bike parts into refined forms.
Ballroom Luminoso references the area’s past, present, and future in the design of its intricately detailed medallions. The images in the medallions draw on the community’s agricultural history, strong Hispanic heritage, and the burgeoning environmental movement. The medallions are a play on the iconography of La Loteria, which has become a touchstone of Hispanic culture. The piece was awarded the 2013 SXSW Transformative Design Award.
Theo & Malone Underpass at I-35, San Antonio, TX
recycled bicycle parts, structural steel, custom LED fixtures
Public Art San Antonio (PASA), Department for Culture and Creative Development
Joe O'Connell, Blessing Hancock