Nov 7, 2017 | By Julia

If you’re already feeling a case of the winter blues, fret not. Starting February 1st, Times Square will be even more bedazzled, thanks to a new public art installation by design team Aranda\Lasch and Marcelo Coehlo. “Window to the Heart” will see the world’s largest lens installed at Father Duffy Square, between 46th and 47th Streets, in a glimmering celebration of love in Times Square. Just announced as the winning entry of the 10th annual Times Square Valentine Heart Design Competition, the massive heart-shaped Fresnel lens was 3D printed by Formlabs, and will remain on view for the entire month of February.

“In one of the world’s most Instagrammed places, filled with cameras of all shapes and sizes, Window to the Heart places the world’s largest lens in the center of Times Square,” said Times Square Arts in a statement. Not just any lens, the giant Fresnel lens measures 12 feet in diameter, and was designed together with 3D printing giant Formlabs. The idea is to both distort and capture the reflective image of Times Square, drawing visitors towards the heart-shaped center window through the optical bending of light. Passers-by will have the opportunity to look through the window or snap themselves in front of it, essentially “completing the loop between the lens of the eye and the lens of the camera.”

Selfie talk aside, the gargantuan 3D printed lens is a design feat in and of itself. Whereas traditional lens-making relies on methods of casting and cutting glass in addition to endless polishing, Window to the Heart will leverage the latest 3D printing technology to craft an entirely new type of reflective structure. Each segment of the 12-foot lens will be 3D printed at a high resolution by Formlabs in clear resin. By using 3D printing resin in place of traditional glass, Window to the Heart aims to subvert our antiquated methods of lens-making, effectively inviting the public to reimagine how to see and be seen in the world. What you’ll see when you look through that heart-shaped window, Times Square hopes, will be love at first sight.

Named as the winner of the 10th annual Times Square Valentine Heart Design Competition, Window to the Heart clearly follows the competition’s mandate to celebrate Love in Times Square in February. Up against some of the top architecture and design firms, the unique installation was jointly designed by acclaimed New York and Tucson-based studio Aranda\Lasch and Brazilian-American computational designer and MIT grad Marcelo Coehlo. Previous competition winners include Sterotank, Collective-LOK, The Office for Creative Research, Young Projects, and Situ Studio.

Window to the heart will be officially unveiled at 11 a.m. on February 1, 2018 at Father Duffy Square, New York. Visitors will have until the end of February to snap themselves with the installation, where they can experience a whole new way to capture the look of love.



Posted in 3D Printing Application



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