Iridescence – Kings Cross

Iridescence: A Nature-Infused Installation, Kings Cross, London by Wolfgang Buttress

Iridescence is an immersive, site-specific installation created by the renowned artist Wolfgang Buttress located not far from Coal Drops Yard, Handyside, Kings Cross, London. This unique creation invites visitors to become one with the energy of plants and soil in real-time, offering an enchanting blend of modulated light, sound, and scent. Tom was privileged in collaborating with Wolfgang in his ingeniously curated bee-friendly temperate planting scheme that seamlessly fuses art, nature, and technology. The installation features 10,000 pollinator-friendly flowers and seeds, meticulously laser-etched into 740 glass blocks, forming a captivating abstracted sculptural diorama. Illuminated by a responsive LED array, influenced by a live data feed, the installation provides a mesmerising glimpse into how bees perceive the world.


Connecting with Nature

At the core of Iridescence lies the intention to foster a deep connection and empathy with the natural world. The space is designed to envelop visitors in a sense of tranquillity, achieved through a gentle, ever-changing soundscape and harmonious visuals driven by live data links. These elements work in synergy to create a serene and meditative atmosphere.

Iridescence seamlessly melds with the interior architecture of the lobby. The design adheres to a simple 100mm x 100mm grid, employing a natural, raw palette of materials, including Douglas Fir timber, glass, and lush plantings. This strict geometry of the grid provides a contrasting backdrop to the ever-changing life of the flowers, grasses, and soil, which interact with the integrated and responsive light and sound system.


The Beauty of Detail

The installation boasts an impressive array of components, including:

3,502 flowering plants 3D laser-etched into crystal glass blocks, featuring dandelions, daisies, poppies, cow parsley, and clover.

A whirlwind of 74,382 3D laser-etched dandelion seeds.

A staggering 19.5 GB of 3D flower scan digital models that played a pivotal role in the laser-etching process.

A total of 9,480 Douglas Fir timber blocks, meticulously cut and finished to construct the artwork, utilizing 420 linear meters of Douglas Fir timber.

A substantial 2 tonnes of crystal glass.

A remarkable 92 custom data-controlled, wide-colour gamut LED luminaires that bring the installation to life.

Iridescence is a testament to the profound connection between humanity and the natural world. It reminds us that we are not apart from nature but an integral part of it. Through the marriage of art, technology, and the environment, this installation inspires a new perspective on our relationship with the world around us.

Wolfgang Buttress

Wolfgang Buttress is a highly acclaimed artist known for his innovative and nature-inspired installations. His work often bridges the gap between art, science, and the environment. Iridescence is a testament to his unique ability to merge the realms of art and nature, creating immersive experiences that inspire wonder and appreciation for the natural world.

As Wolfgang puts it so beautifully: We are a part of nature, not apart from nature


Thomas Hoblyn Garden Design visit each month to ensure the planting is kept in tip top condition and is beautifully maintained by Nurture Landscapes

Photography by Mark Hadden