Cube made its premier at the 2011 Armory Show in New York City and was the first in a series of volumetric explorations by artist Leo Villareal. Parallel Development executed the mechanical design and assembly of the piece.
The piece is based around a 20-inch long circuit board with edge-mounted LEDs designed by Todd Polenberg and found in a number of Villareal’s prior works. The concept called for 100 of the LED boards arranged vertically in a 10 x 10 grid, creating a dense cube of 2000 LEDs, all encased in mirror finish stainless steel.
The greatest challenge presented by this concept was how to make the boards removable for testing and maintenance. After a few iterations we realized the best thing to do was to start with a rigid structure of columns that the LED boards could slide in and out of from the top. Welding the stainless columns into the cap and base was not an option as the heat would cause discoloration in the material’s finish, so we jigged the structure square and used epoxy fillets to hold it together.
Check out the video above to see the finished work in action.