How to move the MOON

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Set into the sky above Triangle Park in Lexington, Kentucky, NEW MOON is an ode to the celestial bodies above us (universally familiar, sans language), light as a social medium, and art as a catalyst for community involvement and interactivity.

There’s more to installing a work of independently-created, public, kinetic and interactive art than this, of course. For NEW MOON, the environmental conditions of install offered a challenge. While thankfully much warmer than the cold weeks leading up to install, there were Tornado warnings, heavy rainfall, and a massive lightning storm. Despite this, we decided to proceed, allowing the weather to re-ensure the durability of the sculpture.

Moving the MOON from the Art Ball to Triangle Park was no mean feat, particularly on the part of our MOON Pilot, the magnificent welding instructor and technical guru, Shawn Gannon.

The sculpture needed to be moved twice – once to BCTC for repairs and the final mechanical work, and a second time from BCTC to Triangle Park. Because of the fiasco of connecting the semi-spheres of the MOON while preparing for the Art Ball, Shawn and Wayne devised a tidy plan for moving the sculpture as a complete unit, inside a moon-box.

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We prepared the MOON-cage in advance, removing two of eight legs to allow space for the sphere to slip inside.

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Once the piece was safely fixed in place, the team worked into the night until thunder storms began rolling into Lexington.

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We went to bed during the storm, with the wail of Tornado Warning sirens sounding in the distance. In the middle of the night, Wayne and I woke up to the sound of thunder, and a loud smash that sounded suspiciously like a light bulb breaking. For a moment we were sure that we were hearing the breaking of our sculpture, several blocks away…

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It turns out that the porch light of the family we were staying with had mysteriously exploded in the middle of the night. NEW MOON weathered through the storm with remarkable ease – a welcome sign for the month ahead.

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