Thursday, June 11, 2015

The Forest of Lights: Atlanta Botanical Gardens

There is something about light that is fascinating.  Mesmerized by a starry sky, we can lose ourselves in the vastness above.  I know many people who will stay up late, meeting up at that perfect location to watch a meteor shower.  Or think of when there's an eclipse: we are drawn to the hanging silhouette (hopefully with eye protection!). We gather as communities for fireworks displays, or come together as family and friends for a campfire in someone's backyard.  Children especially love playing with sparklers and the like.
More information on the Forest of Lights.

Light is powerful and beautiful.

Currently, at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens, there is the "Forest of Light," open Wednesday through Sunday evenings this summer.  The gardens, spectacular to see during the day, are now equally breathtaking and enjoyable after twilight.  Designed and installed by Bruce Munro, the lights transform the gardens into a fantastical get-a-way.

In large part, the display makes me think of the forests of Pandora from the Avatar movie, although I recognize that the "Forest of Light" precedes the film.  Strings of light diverge from their central power box. Twisted in loose shapes, they are encased by plastic bottles to create a lantern-like appearance.  As you watch any of these structures, the colours fluctuate along the rainbow.  Ah, c'est belle!
Shot of the inside of one of the structures.
A number of light structures around a pond, each changing colour.
One of the cool features of the Atlanta Botanical Gardens is that there is a suspended walkway that curls gently over and down into the Storza Woods.  The artist used this feature well.  The forest floor is a meadow of light blossoms, ever changing in colour as you walk over and along the paths.  I could have lost myself amid the beauty.  My photos cannot fully capture how awe-inspiring it was to be among these luminous flowers.

Definitely well worth the visit if you are in the area and have time to go.

Shot from the bridge overhead.
Focused on one "bulb." 
The forest rising up toward the suspended bridge.

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