THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS
Austin, Texas, U.S.A.
RGB HUB served as a central social venue for the 2016 edition of Fusebox, the annual performing arts festival in Austin, Texas. Sited at the historic Saengerrunde Hall, RGB HUB transformed the building’s various spaces – including the bowling alley, the rooftop, and the main dance hall – into an immersive environment using a combination of lighting, graphics, and temporary architecture. The project is inspired by simple phenomena inherent to the Red Green Blue (RBG) color model. In certain conditions, RGB light has the ability to create Cyan Magenta Yellow (CMY) shadows or selectively hide printed CMY color. Various applications of this principle bring experiential and conceptual continuity to the sequence of otherwise disjointed spaces, with the ceiling installation in the dance hall serving as the project’s main feature.
Covering an area of approximately 2,000 square feet, the suspended ceiling alters the proportions of the space and animates the overhead surface with changing color and light. The soft structure, constructed from fabric-gradeTyvek and industrial rope, was parametrically designed to precisely calibrate the curved geometries that are formed under the influence of gravity. The result is in effect a catenary net that is fully tailored to its site. Subdivided into a series of bays, the ceiling echoes the ordering principles of the existing building, while transforming its interior character. A non-repeating tiling pattern in eight colors is strategically distributed to produce distinct monochromatic effects when lit with red, green, and blue light. At times, each color acts as its own fixed scenario; in other situations, colors cycle through slowly, giving the room a rhythm not unlike that of breathing. Using the principles of the Red Green Blue (RBG) color model to design the relationship between the colored surfaces and colored light, the ceiling installation is imbued with dynamic properties in tune with the festival programming.
PHOTOGRAPHS © WHIT PRESTON