Shoal (2023)

Our most recent permanent exhibition, commissioned by the Howard Hughes Corporation.

Commissioned by the Howard Hughes Corporation for The Woodlands community near Houston TX, Shoal is our most recent permanent exhibition. 

The work weaves and twists between the architecture of The Woodlands, before dissipating across the courtyard area, taking inspiration from the mesmerising patterns of movement made by large groups of ocean-going creatures.

Notions of flocking, motion and flow are transposed out of the water and into the air of Hughes Landing, where they are used as the basis for this new suspended artwork and unique visitor attraction. 

Shoal is a site specific form, and uses a novel suspension system in order to focus attention on how it moves through the space; allowing the shoal to fully engage with its environment.

The work consists of a networked system of 750 individual orbs, Each suspended in position. They use our AudioWAVE technology (the system that underpins Wave and is at the heart of Strand) to carry you through the space, recreating not only the suggested movements of the shoal, but also revealing its larger form. 

Each orb also contains its own wifi-enabled processor, LED and speaker. The several hundred speakers and LED’s work to place Hughes Landing within an oceanic ecosystem of sound and light. They are choreographed to work together, collectively creating a unique and beguiling shared experience that feels simultaneously organic and rehearsed. 

Shoal operates in different ways depending on the time of day. During daylight, the work is an ambient moving sound piece, and at night it is a delicate undulating lightwork with some sound. At specific times (8pm to 9pm) the work comes alive with bursts of activity and waves of energy that last around 15 minutes before reverting to a calmer state.