Modern Art Oxford

Terry Smith

21 Jun - 21 Jul 2013

21 June - 21 July 2013

Terry Smith Beacon 2002

Beacon, (2002) by Terry Smith shows five street lamps flickering into life at the onset of dusk. Filmed from the artist's studio, the work is a delicately witty inversion of a natural dawn chorus. Birds are replaced by the halogen glow of urban lighting, and the promise of a new day exchanged for the suggestion of synthetically extended activity of the night.

The background hum that each light emits is artificially reproduced by Smith with an electric piano chord to form a set of five individual notes. As the 'voice' of each bulb is engaged, they form a quintet of electric fizz that welcomes in the evening.

Presented alongside Stephen Willats' Oxford Community Data Stream, (2013) - also shown in the Lower Gallery - the work is a careful, micro-celebration of urban life.

Tags: Stephen Willats