Pipe Dream

Something has possessed our city infrastructure. Across the city tangles of pipes have burst from the ground, their dozens of colourful valves and levers stick out like flowers. Adjusting them releases not water, but light and music. The pipes have transformed themselves into collaborative musical instruments. And they’re waiting for us to play with them.

Pipe Dream is an interactive musical sculpture built from actual piping. It reimagines cities’ most utilitarian and intimidating elements as exuberant and inviting opportunities for interaction. It gives pedestrians permission to tamper and play with parts of the city that are normally off limits.

The centrepiece is a massive tangle of pipes emerging from an outdoor plaza. Through playful experimentation pedestrians can figure out which valves and levers control which music and lighting effects. Several people can engage with the dozens of controls at once, creating an instant focal point for community and connection amongst strangers.

Pipe Dream’s modular construction makes it adaptable to any site. Its simple tactile interface makes it accessible to all ages and cultures. Its mashup of analogue and digital technology defies expectations and challenges our perception of the built environment’s capabilities. Pipe Dream transforms the mundane into the magical.

George has already been experimenting with transforming a standard plumbing lever into a volume control, you can see his quick prototype video here.