Sunshine in a Box
Art, music and eco-friendly design are creatively combined in Craig Colorusso‘s Sun Boxes. This is one of the few instances I’ve come across in which art utilizes an eco-friendly approach as part of its form and function.
Imagine swimming in the middle of a pod of humpback whales. You’re completely immersed in a world of water and sound. While you can see, hear and feel the ocean and its inhabitants around you, the force field of the whales’ lamentations surrounds and insulates you. That is more or less the kind of feeling you will have when you enter Colorusso’s Sun Boxes installation.
Craig is your typical jack-of-all-trades: carpenter by day and musician by night. He masterfully combines his art and craft in a hybrid, eco-friendly device. Craig’s creation is a solar-powered, no battery required, sound installation comprised of twenty speakers, each operating independently. Inside each sun box is a PC board that has a recorded guitar note on a B-flat major scale, loaded and programmed to play continuously in a loop. As the loops are different in length, once the piece begins they continually overlap and the musical composition slowly evolves over time.
Participants are encouraged to walk amongst the speakers. Depending on where you are in the pod, certain speakers will be closer and louder making the piece sound different to different people at different times. The time of day and season all have an impact on the music. At high noon, the music is at its loudest and fastest. At dawn or dusk, the music is quieter, softer. The piece also changes as the length of the day changes. In the winter, the music is less intense and tends to be slower as well.
Craig stumbled upon the idea for his Sun Boxes in 2008 with the help of a good friend. Since then, he’s been perfecting his creation, traveling all over the US to green conventions and art shows, and he recently launched an art/music show in his hometown of Boston at the Important Records compound on the North shore. He has future plans to recording different music for the Sun Boxes, as well as producing a smaller, more portable and affordable version of home and office use.