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Moving World Artwork, Heathrow Terminal 5, London. | by Jim Linwood
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Moving World Artwork, Heathrow Terminal 5, London.

Moving World , the artwork that Langlands & Bell have created for Terminal 5, consists of two individual parts installed separately at either end of the huge outdoor pedestrian plaza which links the Richard Rogers designed terminal building with the car park and transport facilities. Each part of the sculpture consists of a 6 metre radius semi-circle of moving blue light. The light is generated by intense blue neon in the form of twenty four three-letter codes or acronyms mounted in an arc on opaque glass walls marking the northern and southern boundaries of the site, white at the south end and black at the north. In front of each neon and glass wall is a white granite plinth that can also be used by visitors as a seat. The three-letter acronyms in the sculpture are the codes used by air transport authorities to designate the identity of international destinations world wide, ie: LHR for London Heathrow, CDG for Paris, Charles de Gaulle, and JFK for New York. They are digitally controlled and are turned on and off according to various pre-set programmes causing individual acronyms to light up in both random and ordered sequences, to give a constantly changing arc of moving blue light throughout the day and night which reflects across the pedestrian plaza and in the glass walls of the new terminal building.

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Taken on May 23, 2008