Thursday, 15 May 2008

Reaching Out Along Hope Street

An intregal part of the project is the outreach work we are conducting to involve the people of Liverpool in the project. We want the voices of the people of Liverpool to be transmitted over Hope Street as light.

One part of the outreach work was to map the various organisations and businesses along Hope Street. The process began earlier this year by photographing the street to reflect the complexity of useage and the variety or organisations and business we are engaging. The idea is to move out from Hope Street and engage as many people as possible who wish to contribute to the project between now and November 2008.

The above slide show reflects the journey we made down Hope Street one bright Winter's day in January.

Laser Over Hope Street

An important part of the installation is the visual impact of linking the two Cathedrals by laser. The red laser which we are using to transmit the voices and sounds is invisible to the naked eye.

We have been conducting experiments using a green laser with our partners Lairdside Laser and Laser Quantum. The above slide show demonstrates the visual impact we want to create in linking the two Cathedrals along Hope Street. We believe this visual impact will greatly enhance the presence of the project and lead to people taking more notice of what we are trying to achieve. We would also want people to be sufficently interested by the visual laser to take part in the installation.

We have also been discussing the possibility of a greater visual impact by modulating the green laser with the energy of the voices we are generating.

We must thank Chris McCarthy for the stunning photographs in the slide show and are new banner for the blog.

Laser Installation 3

The above slide show details the installation of one of the infra-red lasers at the Liverpool Metropolitan Cathedral.

Laser Installation 2

The above slide show details the installation of the infra-red laser at the Liverpool Catherdral.

The installation involved fixing the laser to a parapet on the bell tower of the Cathedral. The installation was made difficult due to access issues in the building, locating the laser at the best height, only being allowed to use non-intrusive fixing of the laser because of heritage considerations and the distance from the Cathredal's audio system to the parapet.

Access to the parapet has to be negotiated through 2 lifts, narrow spaces within the Cathedral, many stairs and finally using a ladder from the bell-ringing area to the a window onto the parapet.

We explored several possible locations for the postioning of the laser but the parapet had the best height to link to the Metropolitan Cathedral especially when we install the green visual laser.

We eventually overcame the fixing of the laser to the parapet by using a resin, which enables us to get the strength of fix to maintain the link in all weathers and get over the problem of not being able to bolt the laser to the floor.

We were presented with a problem of fixing the internal cabling once we decided on the positioning of the laser. This problem was solved with considerable help from the Cathedral's staff who fixed the cable for us so that it was not intrusive.

Laser Installation 1

The installation of the laser system has involved considerable planning and difficult work in both Cathedrals as we faced the challenges presented by the structures of both buildings.

We conducted several site inspections with staff from both Cathedrals and the project team over the Winter. We needed to ensure we complied with safety requirements and the heritage of both buildings which required safe and sensitive installation of cabling and lasers. The staff from both Cathedrals provided us with excellent support and helped with the installaton of cabling from the lasers to the internal audio systems.

In the above slide show, you can see Keith and Wayne from the project team working on installing the laser and external cabling on the Liverpool Metropolitan Catherdal.

Liverpool Cathedrals In Winter 08

Over the late winter months, we worked hard to install the infra-red laser system in the two Cathedrals. The infra-red laser will carry the audio between the Cathedrals and is a crucial part of the installation to allow us to transmit "voices travelling as light down Hope Street". The photos were taken on a cold February morning before we began work.