SiO4H2O

SiO4H2O
Moving Image
Linda Persson
In 2015, I went to Lighting Ridge in New South Wales, Australia. This is one of the few places on Earth where one can find black opal. SiO2.nH2O is a sculptural live installation charged by code, which lights to illuminate a small black opal picked in Lighting Ridge. The black opal is placed inside a display cabinet framed by a microscopic camera and Arduino coded LED lights. The code moves each pixel in succession to illuminate every fractal of the stone, creating a light movement similar to the Northern Lights. An opal stone is not a crystal. It is more similar to a snowflake. And every opal contains 3-21% water, hence the variation of colour, shimmer and delicate nature. The .n stands for variable content of water within the mineraloid opal. Despite being found 23-40 metres underground, surrounded for millions of years by sandstone and clay, trapped in a shape from the past, the opal here acts as a time machine, producing a light show that makes deep time visible here in the present. This piece seeks to portray the potential of life, encapsulated dormant inside, ready to awaken in the future. Perhaps long past our existence. What you see as a viewer is the contraption that holds the camera/ stone and the live feed straight to the HD projector that projects the internal structure, enlarged 180 times in the same space. This was first made for the Momentum Biennial, Norway, in 2017.