Luminescent columns by artist Liz West glow in the dark in Salford, acting as a playful beacon for pedestrians walking through the city centre’s Greengate corridor.
The permanent installation is called Slow Revolution and comprises eight individual towers constructed with 56 colourful prisms. West has set them apart at 5-degree angles to create the illusion they are twisting on an axis as the viewer moves around them, warping the sense of space and feigning the impression of movement.
These vibrant steel and aluminium columns are further activated at night when their retro-reflective skins glow. Each totem is covered with tens of thousands of tiny glass beads that reflect light meaning they self-illuminate when light is projected onto them, acting as a signpost in the dark.
West’s work explores light theory and the colour spectrum. Salford, with neighbouring Manchester, were behemoths of the clothing industry during the industrial revolution and the steel and aluminium towers’ colours nod to the dyes used in its cotton mills.