The Airfield© is an open-ended, process-oriented interactive sculpture that is visually engaging and dynamic and is well constructed. The public is provided easy access and interactivity. It exploits the natural curiosity of its users to manipulate various media with endless possibilities.
The interactive sculpture’s cylindrical body and circular tabletop contains a plenum. The maple top has a grid of countersunk holes, and it is ringed with brightly colored hose that serves as a retainer for the steel pins and Styrofoam balls that are manipulated by children or adults. The cylinder is skinned with a colorful holographic material. It is 27 inches tall, requires 110 volt AC, and has a 12-hour timer and a resettable circuit breaker and is handicapped accessible. The public’s propensity to explore this sculpture leads to the discovery of an element of surprise.
sculpture’s plenum forces air through the holes in the
tabletop. Participants insert and remove the steel pins in the grid
in an infinitely variable configuration to create chaotic motion as
the balls dance, float, and hover above the table. Removing the pins
with a magnetic wand and then replacing them in the holes is
tactilely and visually stimulating. As the number of pins is
removed, the less energetic the balls become until they hover right
above the holes. Conversely, the more pins inserted, the more
animated the balls become and the higher they dance. As the number
of pins inserted increases to a critical point, several of the pins
unexpectedly levitate out of their holes, playfully surprising the
participants and observers. The elements of this
process--exploration, discovery and multiple outcomes--result in an
experience of success and satisfaction for those interacting with