Work Of Art

Work Of Art
  • ATAMI CITY, JAPAN-Designed to reflect a mysterious and unknown world, 200 meters (625 feet) of softly colored underground escalator passages and mid-point domed hall reflect the unique character of the MOA (Mokichi Okada Association) Museum of Art while creating a heightened level of anticipation for visitors.

Martin Architectural Cyclo fixtures illuminate Japan's MOA Museum of Art from the entrance through the escalator passage and hall, creating a visually stimulating and mysterious space.
The MOA opened in Japan's Atami City in 1982. Built over 800 feet above sea level amidst the expanse of a huge 80,000-foot garden, fabulous views of the open sea can be enjoyed from atop its perch on Momoyama Hill. The beautiful rectilinear modern architecture of the museum's main building-rising from the Japanese tearooms and beauty of the surrounding garden-was designed to match its natural surroundings.

Since its opening, the MOA collection has maintained an excellent reputation. The 3,500 works of art, including three national treasures and 65 important cultural properties, display a distinct charm and value from the perspective of art and historical study.

Access to the museum's main building is a unique journey in and of itself. From the museum entrance to the main building visitors travel some 600 feet up escalators running along a tunnel passage. Each escalator (14 in all running both directions) extends more than 100 feet and is encased within the natural environment of Momoyama Hill. A circular, domed hall is located at the midpoint of the journey and serves as a multipurpose room and space for artistic expression.

In January 2006, 295 Martin Architectural Cyclo 04 DMX fixtures were installed. The Cyclo 04 DMX is an RGB plus white 28W T5 fluorescent color changer capable of generating nearly all colors or white light of any color temperature. The Cyclo 04s are equipped with a diffuser front lens to project an even field of colored light by completely diffusing the light from each tube. Additionally, color filters are incorporated to emphasize the LD's required color variation. The Cyclos illuminate the museum from the entrance through the escalator passage and hall, creating a visually stimulating and mysterious space.

The dome-shaped ceiling of the circular hall is illuminated in soft shades using 52 Cyclo 04 DMX units. Color transforms slowly and yet expresses a novel and stark contrast to a group of 12 Cyclos installed in a round central cover at the top of the dome. As visitors approach the room from the ethereally illuminated passage, the colored dome appears gradually, its presence leading to a completely different world.

Cyclos are installed on both sides of the escalator passages, illuminating pleated walls, which rise in a natural gradation. Color mixing sequences in the passage's last four minutes and illuminate the space in six color variants. In the domed hall, four-color scenes reflect current outdoor lighting levels, such as a sunrise or the brightness of a full-moon night.

The architect for the project was the Takenaka Corporation, and the lighting designer for MOA Museum of Art's escalator passage and domed hall was Toshimi Yanase of Tokyo Butai Showmei. He commented, "It is designed to represent a mysterious and unknown world for the visitors and for them to also feel excited during the long escalator ride. Soft colors are programmed to create a peaceful atmosphere which goes along with the character of the museum."

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