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Over 200,000 people took part in the highly anticipated dusk to dawn event – confirming that local, authentic, cutting-edge cultural events are on the top of everyone’s wish list. Throughout the night, a hugely diverse and enthusiastic public participated in the magic.
At any given time, up to 75,000 people could be found on the Santa Monica Pier and the surrounding beach and park, all entranced by the exciting range of artworks and performances. Even the legendary grunion, the inspiration for the event, put in an appearance – to the delight of the thousands of people gathered at the water’s edge to greet them!
From the most sophisticated use of technology, as seen in Usman Haque’s Primal Source, to the humble, such as the acoustical sea shanties on the beach, Glow offered an astonishing variety of art. Shih Chieh Huang’s EX-SE-08 transformed the pedestrian path beneath the Pier into an other worldly experience. Thousands participated in Caroline Maxwell & Tal Yizrael’s The Department of Nocturnal Affairs, reporting wildlife sightings which were hand typed on a vintage typewriter and then plotted on a large map. Camera Projecta provided ten opaque projectors upon which people arranged all manner of objects supplied by reDiscover with Shiva Mandell. The resulting images were beamed onto the windows of the Senior Center in Palisades Park, transforming the building into a dynamic lantern.
Late Saturday afternoon, the Glow team got its first indication that attendance might be greater than anticipated when response time on the City of Santa Monica’s website slowed down to about 15 minutes – undoubtedly due to the huge internet response. The unanticipated, tremendous draw resulted in a few mid-course adjustments early Sunday morning. When a new wave of Glow seekers arrived after 2:00 am, the Santa Monica Pier finally reached capacity. Public safety officials then limited access to the Pier for a period of time, the music stage was closed, and the popular work by Usman Haque north of the Pier was briefly shut down.
Most took this as their cue to wander the other Glow locations, enjoying projects and performances throughout the night. We were excited to see thousands of people on hand as the sun came up on Sunday morning, gathering on the beach, finishing off their elaborate picnics and enjoying the work of over 100 participating artists that continued to glow through the night including Jeff Cain’s remarkable Skyglow.
Thank you for making Glow such a grand night! Please take a moment to submit your ideas and suggestions as we look to the future and the next installment of Glow in 2010.
Glow was a huge success! From dusk to dawn, the Santa Monica beach and pier was transformed into a spectacular environment filled with many opportunities for public wonder and participation. Whether artist or art lover, everyone was engulfed in this mesmerizing experience.