Watch the sculpture in action:

Metalmatisse is an interactive, stainless-steel, light and sound sculpture designed to complement the formal European landscape of MacArthur Square. The goal was to activate the central downtown square with art, interactivity, light and sound. Visitors can activate lights and sounds in 14 locations by standing in view of an aimed sensor inside of each flower. A vase and bouquet are loosely adapted from paintings of flowers by French artist Henri Matisse with a distinctly modern statement of scale and exuberance. Periodically the entire sculpture comes to life in an orchestrated chorus of light and sound.

Electroland’s Cameron McNall states, “We enjoyed a wonderful collaborative process with the Norfolk Arts committee formed to choose an artist and artwork. During the course of the collaboration the design changed many times in response to committee comments. Everyone involved came away impressed with how well the process led to a superior artwork that addressed the needs of Norfolk.”

The artwork is made from stainless steel, which is one of the few materials that hold up well in a salt-water environment like Norfolk. The outdoor interactive aspect is rare in public art. You’ll often find adults and kids alike taking a moment to move and capture the artwork in action. Proof of the fun an unexpected encounter with artwork can provide.

The sculpture reminds us of the famous quote by Author John Lubbock “Art is unquestionably one of the purest and highest elements in human happiness. It trains the mind through the eye, and the eye through the mind. As the sun colors flowers, so does art color life.” ~ Taken from his book, “The Pleasures of Life”

See more photos of MetalMatisse

See more photos on Electroland’s website

Photo Credit (photo #1) by David C. Sullivan,

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