San Carlos Lantern Project - Lumileds / Steve Durie and Bruce Gardner

The impetus for this project came out of the San Jose Dept. Public Works project funds for the San Carlos Streetscape upgrade and also a Donation of Leds from Phillips Lumileds Leds. Having been commissioned from the city to design a public art project that coincides with the San Carlos Streetscape upgrade, we have settled a specific design, that we have been presenting to both internal city bureau as well as various committee’s for public review. In the current design we are building a series of 8 vertical displays ~ 6 feet in height, each of which will be attached to street lamps. The displays and lamps will be installed on the south-side of San Carlos street from 4 th to Market.

Each display is designed to illuminate various color combinations, and create pulsing, chase and syncing light patterns. Each display when installed would have a control system and series of sensors. One sensor would be a large ‘crosswalk-like’ button at the base of the street pole, which would encourage passersby to tap, rhythmic triggering of the light displays.

The control system for each LED strip would have a short loop memory of being able to play back each percussive sequence after a user is done playing. This would be analogous to creating a short rhythmic phrase that could be played over for about half a minute. The installation of this on the street, would create the spontaneous interaction of playing a light based instrument/game like the early electronic memory game called 'simon'.

As a group, they will be visible down the street as a series of vertical lights. Each unit could be ‘played with’ by the public, as they make their way down the street. As multiple people get involved with them, there are various opportunities of play possible.

Steve Durie and Bruce Gardner

live and work in San Jose, CA


Steve Durie and Bruce Gardner had the great fortune to have previously collaborated for 10 years (1997-2007) in the art/business hybrid C5 Corporation, of which they are all founding members. They are now working on a variety of projects together and not looking back.

Steve Durie has worked on projects involving digital media, installation, and performance. He was a founding member of the art/business hybrid C5. He also worked with public artists like Mel Chin. Steve’s interests include: visualization, interface, performance systems and game culture. He is a Lecturer/Advisor at the CADRE @ SJSU.

Bruce Gardner is a digital media artist living and working in San Jose, California. Common themes found in his artwork include data visualization, interface, and mapping. He also was a early member of C5 and major contributor to that organization over its 10 years. When he's not working on art, Bruce can usually be found on his road bike riding through the hills in the Bay Area region as a competitive cyclist.