Another example of his work: in the railway station in Amersfoort, Netherlands Joost van Santen created an ellipsoidal glass window at the south façade of the hall. The sun projects this coloured ellipse onto the floor. This image moves through the hall with time of day and season. By observing the moving image` one experiences the passage of time. It helps to awaken consciousness of the movement of the earth around its axe and the earth around the sun, situating the earth in cosmic space.
In other commissions such as in the 20-meter high landmark sculpture the ‘Lighted lady’ in Barking, London the silhouette of the sculpture changes with the position and movement of the viewer. This is also the case in the night situation.
In the centre of Amsterdam I designed a War Memorial, the Ravensbrück Monument. Dynamic Light and Sound are inside the work. In these projects the physical appearance of the artworks stems from the dynamic content.
Public art is important for me. It is a possibility to create works of art on a scale that cannot be realized in the studio. The artwork becomes a landmark giving identity to the environment. People cannot avoid public art. This means an extra responsibility for the quality of the work.
In architecture Joost van Santen researches, in close collaboration with the architect, the places where the inflowing light can be intercepted and transformed. Captured light images reflect the bluish morning light or the pink light of the evening. They convey the gray colours of autumn or the blazing summer sun. The images change constantly with movement of the sun, depending on weather and changes in seasons. These dynamic light images enrich the quality of the architecture.
In the sculptures of Joost van Santen light images appear changing according to the time of day and the day of the year
Joost van Santen won an open art competition as part of the redevelopment of Barking City London. He realized a sculpture 'The Lighted Lady' 20 meters high at the entrance of the city. See http://joostvansanten.nl/lady1.html
The reaction below illustrates the way Joost van Santen thinks public art should influence the surroundings.
i live in dagenham
every morning i drive thro the roundabout with your sculpture
i look forward to seeing it
i am not an artistic person - I am an electrician
how clever the man must be who built that
the light and shape is never the same
it looks different every time i see it
i want to touch it
stand by it
look up at it
but its in the middle of a very busy roundabout
then i thought
that's what you wanted
then i realised
you really are a gifted person
In an experiment in my studio I installed colour filters and reflectors in the windows. Daylight casts images onto translucent screens. The projected images change continuously, depending weather and the position of the sun. Based on these phenomena I made designs of micro architecture 'Light Spaces', just meant for experiencing light. To reflect the essence of my work:
'Becoming aware of light as part of the universe'