15 October 2020
The making of Glow Wild
Uncover the magic behind Wakehurst's winter lantern trail Glow Wild.
Preparations for Glow Wild 2020 are underway.
This year we are working with three new artists to showcase a dazzling display of light, from sparkling lanterns to illuminating projections.
Here we explore the latest additions to our festive winter spectacle, the inspirations behind installations, and the hard work going on behind the scenes.
OGE group: ‘Light a Wish’
The creative collective of architects and designers, OGE Group, are bringing their award-winning ‘Light a Wish’ installation from Amsterdam’s canals to Wakehurst’s Black Pond.
Their installation of giant, gently sparkling dandelion seed heads is inspired by childhood memories of picking dandelion flowers and blowing the seeds into the wind to cast a wish.
Re-live these magical moments or experience them for the first time on your journey along the Glow Wild trail.
Making the wish
OGE Group use a mixture of materials and like to play with size, volume, and appearance to make a tangible installation that creates a dialogue with the audience.
'Light a Wish' was first designed with the help of 3D software and simulations, taking 2-3 months.
Then, over the course of a few weeks, the design studio built the installation with plenty of welding, cutting, gluing, bending and electrical work.
Sarah Hall-Baqai: Fairy-tale fungi lanterns
Graphic designer and sculptor Sarah Hall-Baqai is introducing a new installation to our Winter Garden this year which explores the wonders of fungi.
Her fascinating fungi lanterns, from an enchanting fairy ring to giant puffballs, are inspired by the beautiful illustrations by Katie Scott in the book, Fungarium.
These luminary delights explore the elaborate textures and vibrant colours of fungi against the dramatic landscape of the Winter Garden.
Unearthing the fungi lanterns
Sarah’s lanterns are made from the versatile mediums of paper and willow.
Each of her lanterns takes between two and four days to complete depending on the size and complexity of the structure and surface design applied.
The willow structure is formed, which is then covered with cling film to give it more strength.
Several layers of translucent white paper and dilute PVA glue are then applied to the structure and the coloured surface pattern is sandwiched beneath the last layer of paper.
The Colour Project: Giant projections
Breath-taking 3D animations will be cast onto the Wakehurst landscape, created by digital design studio The Colour Project.
In celebration of nocturnal life, you will find projections of majestic barn owls among the trees of our Pinetum.
The Colour Project will also shine a light on our Elizabethan Mansion to reveal the secret life of fungi.
Also inspired by the elegant illustrations in the Fungarium book, their animations delve below ground to uncover fungi networks that are normally hidden from the human eye.
Casting some light
To create the giant Mansion projection, the Colour Project started with a storyboard illustrating the mysteries of fungi.
Mood boards helped pull together their visual approaches, which were all designed to complement the size, surface, and style of our Mansion.
The Colour Project then produced a rough animated timeline of the main visual and audio components of the show which provided an idea of timings and rhythms.
Their creative team of character animators, 3D modellers, illustrators and motion graphic artists began modelling and animating for the final show using a combination of line drawing and 3D modelling.
To help with this, the creative team produced an exact 3D digital model of the Mansion.
All this work can take the team anywhere between eight to 20 weeks to complete.
The final animations are then projected onto our Mansion using specialist video mapping software and high-powered laser projectors.
Sound designers and composers, Ithaca, will complement the animations with an evocative soundscape.
Experience this stunning artistry come to life at Glow Wild this winter.