Launching today in Oxford

Watershed and Smart Oxford are delighted to announce the winner of the first Smart Oxford Playable City Commission will be available for the public to play with from Jan 19.

The creators of Star Light, Star Bright, UK based, Hellion Trace (formerly Guerrilla Dance Project) will invite citizens to activate beams of light to map star constellations from the night sky onto the streets of Oxford.

The open call for ideas received 82 applications from artists, designers, architects, technologists and creative practitioners from 28 countries around the world who proposed new and distinctive ideas to respond to the theme Shared City.

Star Light, Star Bright maps the night sky onto the streets of Oxford via pressure sensitive lights embedded in the ground. Placed in clusters across the city, the lights encourage players to gather together to map constellations from the night sky. Each “star” will shine brighter as more are activated, until the final star cues super bright beams of light – bathing the people beneath in a constellation of stars. This city-wide intervention brings life to dark winter streets, connecting strangers for a shared moment of discovery and wonder.

Laura Kriefman, founder of Hellion Trace, says “We are so excited that Hellion Trace have been awarded the Smart Oxford Playable City Commission. Having been actively involved in the Playable City movement for years, it is great to be able to create a city-wide piece in the UK. Hellion Trace can’t wait to make the stars shine bright, for all the citizens of the beautiful City of Oxford”

The judges were particularly excited by opportunities for connection between the diverse populations who live, visit and work within Oxford and the connection to Oxford’s history of space exploration from Radcliffe Observatory to the European Space Agency at Harwell.

As winners of the Award, Hellion Trace will received £30,000 and support from Playable City to help realise their ideas.

The Smart Oxford Playable City Commission is produced by Watershed and supported by Oxford City CouncilOxfordshire County CouncilLucy, Nominet, BoschScience OxfordOxford Brookes UniversityUniversity of OxfordOxlepOxford Bus Company and RACE.