Sun Boxes is a solar powered sound installation. It’s comprised of twenty speakers operating independently, each powered by the sun via solar panels. Inside each Sun Box is a PC board that has a recorded guitar note loaded and programmed to play continuously in a loop. These guitar notes collectively make a Bb chord. Because the loops are different in length, once the piece begins they continually overlap and the piece slowly evolves over time.
The piece creates space; it’s an environment for one to enter and exit. The footprint this environment occupies is similar to that of a city. A metropolis. It’s a burst of technology in the middle of nature. Unlike most cities I have been to, it does not just take over the space. Rather Sun Boxes interfaces with the environment and collaborates with nature. It is the perfect combination of technology and nature that create art, an environment, and a metropolis.
Participants are encouraged to walk amongst the speakers, and surround themselves with the piece. Certain speakers will be closer and, therefore, louder so the piece will sound different to different people in different positions throughout the array. Allowing the audience to move around the piece will create a unique experience for everyone.
In addition, the participants are encouraged to wander through the speakers, which will alter the composition as they move. Given the option two people will take different paths through the array and hear the composition differently. Sun
Boxes is not just one composition, but, many. There are no batteries involved, so Sun Boxes are reliant on the sun. When the sun sets the music stops and doesn’t start until the sun rises. The piece changes as the length of the day
changes. Since the amount of sunlight varies from day to day so does the composition of Sun Boxes. We are all reliant on the sun. It is refreshing to be reminded of this. Our lives have filled up with technology. But we still need the sun and so does Sun Boxes. Karlheinze Stockhausen once said “using Short-wave radios in pieces was like improvising with the world.” Similarly The Sun Boxes are collaborating with the planet and it’s relation to the