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Messages From ‘Open Air’ Light Show Archived

Open Air was a recipient of funding from the Knight Arts Challenge. (Credit: OpenAirPhilly.net)

Open Air was a recipient of funding from the Knight Arts Challenge. (Credit: OpenAirPhilly.net)

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By Pat Loeb

PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – The light show, “Open Air” drew 17,000 people to the Benjamin Franklin Parkway before it closed, last month.

But if you missed it, you can still enjoy one aspect of the project: an archive of the messages the artist used to choreograph the lights.

Some people left music, or poems or literary passages, but some left heartfelt messages.

“It’s been two years since you’ve been gone and I still love you every day and dream of you every night,” read one message running the gamut of emotions.

“My greatest fear is an elevator in a tall building,” and “Happy birthday mom. I love you,” were among other messages left.

Artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer solicited the messages, then created a program that used them to guide the 24 high-powered lights that created an ever-changing canopy over the Parkway.

“Using GPS positioning, the lights would move toward the person speaking, then the lights would react in intensity to what was being said,” project manager Susan Myers explains.

The lights are down now but the archive of messages remains in perpetuity at openairphilly.net.

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