Visitors to a major Scottish attraction will be step into an astronaut’s shoes to see the Earth as it is seen from space with a spectacular 3D model of our planet.
A visually stunning art installation depicting Earth as an astronaut would see it from space is to make its Scottish debut at a breath-taking illuminated outdoor tour at The Helix, home of the Kelpies, near Falkirk.
Gaia, a seven-metre scale model of Earth created by international installation artist Luke Jerram, will make its Scottish premiere at Fire & Light: Cosmic Fortunes, which is returning to The Helix on January 1 and 2, 2019 for a fourth year.
The spectacular event sees The Helix transformed into a striking combination of fire performance, interactive light installations, captivating puppetry and animated projections depicting the signs of the Zodiac – all in front of the backdrop of the iconic Kelpies.
2019’s Fire & Light is expected to draw bigger crowds, with a record 11,000 tickets now on sale.
Luke Jerram’s Gaia will be at the heart of the event, offering visitors a rare opportunity to see a floating three-dimensional depiction of Earth on such a large scale.
Meaning the Personification of the Earth in Greek Mythology, Gaia creates a sense of the Overview Effect which is a phenomenon astronauts experience when viewing the Earth from Space in which they feel a sense of awe and a renewed sense of responsibility for the planet.
The installation features detailed NASA imagery of the Earth’s surface and each centimetre of the installation represents 18km of the Earth’s surface.
This will be Gaia’s third outing in the UK, having premiered at the Bluedot Festival in Cheshire and made a special appearance for one evening only at the Natural History Museum this month.
Luke Jerram, international installation artist and creator of Gaia, said: ‘I am delighted that Gaia will reach new audiences in Scotland at Fire & Light: Cosmic Fortunes. We have been able to gaze at the moon for as long as we have lived on this planet, but have only known what the Earth looks like from space in the last half a century.
‘Viewing Gaia will give people a realistic idea of what it is like to see the Earth from space or, if they stand at the correct distance away, from the moon.’
Managed by Falkirk Community Trust with support from Scotland’s Winter Festivals event fund, this year’s theme is the 12 signs of the zodiac and will feature creations from five Scotland-based artists including David Powell, Pyroceltica and Vision Mechanics as well as Gaia.
Jane McInally, a Glasgow-based artist famed for her expertise in creating spectacular paper lanterns is working on the 13th installation, a community project to compliment Gaia which is being created by the young people of Falkirk.
Jane is working in partnership with 18 young people from local schools and colleges to create a special interactive installation.
Organisers are excited for the public to see the entire show, which is quickly becoming a must-do on the New Year calendar.
Ben Mardall, Helix Team Leader at Community Trust, said: ‘Fire & Light: Cosmic Fortunes is set to be an incredible show. The creative contributors have been outstanding and we are so excited to be featuring Luke Jerram’s Gaia as one of the many light installations visitors will be able to marvel at.
‘There is something for all ages, from fire performances to animated projections. Of course, there’s also our magical Kelpies, the world’s largest equine sculptures, which are always a spectacular sight. We are recommending visitors book as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.’
Tickets are available every 15 minutes from 4.30-7pm on Jan 1 and 2. For tickets click HERE.