Pulse Corniche - interactive installation by Raphael Lozano Hemmer

Pulse Corniche by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer is an outdoor interactive installation in Abu Dhabi which you can visit and interact with till 17th January 2015.

The installation is an extension of the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi’s pre-opening exhibition, Seeing Through Light: Selections from the Guggenheim Abu Dhabi Collection at Manarat Al Saadiyat on Saadiyat Island (on till 26th March 2015). It features artworks by 19 international artists from the 1960s to today, all exploring the theme of light. 

I'm glad to see large light installations like this are coming to the UAE, the last one I saw was Ryoji Ikeda's Spectra in Sharjah more than a year ago. 

Abu Dhabi Corniche’s East Plaza will be transformed into a canvas with an interactive public art performance by artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer at Pulse Corniche. 

A display of an interactive canopy of powerful light beams projected into to the sky by some of the world's strongest robotic searchlights will be part of this participatory installation, the brightness and orientation of which is controlled by the heart-rate of visitors to the Abu Dhabi's Corniche.  

Free to participate, the public is invited to participate by holding a sensor placed in the centre of the plaza that converts the electrical activity of their heart into a unique lighting sequence.  The intensity and direction of the lights makes visual the different biometric rhythms of each participant. Pulse Corniche is the culmination of a series of interactive public art-works that Hemmer debuted at the 2007 Venice Biennale with Pulse Room.


Pulse Corniche (2014-2015) is inspired by Roberto Gavaldón's film "Macario" (Mexico, 1960), in which the protagonist has a hunger-induced hallucination wherein individuals are represented by flickering candles in a cave, Pulse Corniche is expected to draw constant, personal participation to create an immersive, intimate experience of glimmering light along the Abu Dhabi waterfront. 

Although the strength and reach of the searchlights ensures that the illuminated rhythms of peoples’ hearts will be visible at night from across the city, the cumulative effect is a poetic representation of vital signs, arguably the most symbolic human biometric, in an urban scale, transforming the public space into a fleeting architecture of light and movement. 

Event details

Date: On till Saturday, 17th January 2015 (6.45pm -11.00pm from Sunday to Wednesday and 6.45pm - 1.00 am from Thursday to Saturday)

Venue: Abu Dhabi Corniche, East Plaza





[images/video via @SaadiyatCD