A semi-circular concrete steel  arch has appeared in the middle of the green lawn by Canary Wharf’s skyscrapers with a range of steel tubes sticking out of the top.

A random passer by who lacks curiosity might wander by and conclude it is just another “lump of art” that make regular visits to the area, but those with cat-like curiosity who walk over to read the sign might be in for a delight.

This sculpture is a giant wind powered musical instrument.

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

Aeolus is said to be the outcome of a three year investigation into acoustics, wind and architecture by Bristol-based artist Luke Jerram – the guy who flew music-playing hot air balloons over London last year.

This is something the encourages people to peer through the tubes, and in doing so, you hear an ethereal sound emanating from each opening. Moving around the space within a tune is made by the tubes that raises and changes as the natural wind waxes and wanes.

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

What looks like some guy-ropes to hold the whole thing steady are actually string instruments that vibrate in the wind and channel their energy down select tubes to the centre of the space within.

Curiously, standing on one side and facing the tubes means the wavering sound is louder opposite you – so you swap to the other side, only for the sound to leap over to where you were standing before.

This is a “lump of art” that seemed to be creating a bit of interest amongst those who wandered over, cameraphone in hand to do the usual, and then to stick their heads next to it to listen to the art.

Just turn up on a windy day – the effect is quite delightful.

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

Aeolus – Acoustic Wind Pavilion will be at Canary Wharf until 10th May 2012. Map Link.

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

Aeolus at Canary Wharf

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3 comments
  1. swirlythingy says:

    I can’t see any ropes. Did they not come out in the photograph?

  2. luke jerram says:

    thanks for visiting ian! Its all made of stainless steel, no concrete
    involved. Looking for a permanent home too if u know anyone
    let me know!
    I owe u a balloon trip too!!
    all the best
    Luke

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