Field of Light Blooms in the Desert

March 10, 2016

Australia’s ‘Red Centre’ has been transformed, with the ‘Field of Light’ planted in the foreground of Uluru, comprising some 50,000 solar lights atop slender stems and creating a visual impression of a field of glowing buds which sway in the evening breeze as the sun sets over Australia’s spiritual heartland.

British-born installation artist Bruce Munro is renowned for creating engaging, large-scale light-based installations, a field of work which is inspired by his interest in shared human experience. He conceived the idea for the Field of Light while visiting Uluru in 1992, and it materialised in its first incarnation at London’s Victoria & Albert Museum in 2004.

The Field of Light at Uluru is the largest recreation of the solar powered installation, featuring 50,000 stems crowned with radiant frosted-glass spheres, which will bloom and appear to sway as darkness descends. Pathways will invite visitors into the artwork, which will come to life under a sky brilliant with stars like an earthly reflection.

Bruce has been working on location at Uluru with his team to install the work and says it’s the realisation of an almost quarter-century dream.

“I saw in my mind a landscape of illuminated stems that, like the dormant seed in a dry desert, quietly wait until darkness falls, under a blazing blanket of southern stars, to bloom with gentle rhythms of light,” Bruce said.

Longitude 131° guests have an exclusive experience of the interactive artwork as part of the lodge’s signature experiences program. The late-afternoon activity begins with sundowners at the western face of Uluru allowing guests a front-row view of the sun’s daily light spectacular as it sets beyond Kata Tjuta.

As the twilight cools the day, guests walk uninterrupted along the pathways in the Field of Light, just as the tiny buds are lighting up in the evening sky. When it’s time to depart, the field will be fully lit, mirroring the billions of stars in the midnight blue of the desert sky and offering an unforgettable transformation of the landscape.

The night is complete with iconic outdoor dining among the dunes at Table 131°.

The Field of Light has previously been exhibited across the United Kingdom including in Wiltshire, Cornwall, and Bath, and in the US cities of Houston, Pennsylvania and Virginia. The installation has even done a stint in Mexico City.

The Field of Light will bring light each evening until December 31, 2020.

Photos by: Mark Pickthall