Aberdeen’s Union Terrace Gardens to be home to giant musical seesaws for SPECTRA festival

People are being asked to awaken otherworldly beings within giant musical seesaws in a new Aberdeen art installation.

Union Terrace Gardens is currently being transformed into a playground with a number of
exhibits being prepared as part of the SPECTRA festival, which runs from tomorrow to Sunday.

The main exhibit, Wave Field, created by Lateral Office and CS Design, will see large, light-up, musical seesaws set up in the park, with the public encouraged to activate supposed “beings” within them.

Anne-Marie Paquette, lighting designer with CS Design, said: “Wave Field is a light and sound experience that’s composed of eight interactive seesaws creating a soundscape within Union Terrace Gardens.

Alongside this there will be another 15 other installations in the area and His Majesty’s Theatre will be transformed into a giant projection telling the story of Orpheus and Euridyce.

“The soundscape is designed around this half-whimsical notion that each apparatus is inhabited by some otherworldly being.

“And so we’re inviting the public of Aberdeen and the surrounding region to come activate these beings and enjoy creating a unique soundscape.”

Anne-Marie and the team have brought the exhibit all the way from Canada.

She said: “We’re from Montreal, that’s were the artwork was made, and it’s been exhibited all over North America.

“We’re actually debuting a brand new soundscape here in Aberdeen, so it’s a world debut of this new light and sound experience.

“The site is beautiful. We’re so honoured to be able to exhibit here.”

Andy Brydon, creative director at Curated Place, which produces SPECTRA, said: “We’re trying to come back for 2018 bigger and better than ever. We’ve got some enormous installations going in this year, Wave Field from Lateral Office – the seesaws have come all the way from Canada – and we’ve got Light Battle that’s come from Amsterdam having been all around the world.”

Mr Brydon also said there will be new attractions including facial scanning technology, commisions from local artists and a schools programme involving more than 400 pupils, as well as more installations at St Nicholas Kirk.

Aberdeen City Council culture spokeswoman Marie Boulton said: “Wave Field by Lateral Office is an exciting addition to the SPECTRA line-up.”