Artist spreads light

It is delightful to read in The Guardian that the artist Olafur Eliasson (the man who put a giant sun in Tate Modern) has co-designed a series of portable affordable solar-powered lights for use in developing countries. It should give the one in five people who live off-grid up to five hours of actual light, much safer, brighter and environmentally responsible than the kerosene lamps that are currently the only option for many.

Eliasson believes it is important that these lights are designed by an artist because ‘people want beautiful things in their lives’. Yet his project is in its simplicity reminiscent of another invention that also brings light into people’s lives – but this time in daytime. This is the plastic bottle filled with water that has been introduced to many tin roofs in the Philippines, allowing the sun to filter into their homes for the first time.

Great inventions both.









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