Electric Dandelions by the Numbers
If you’ve strolled through the Seaport District after dark recently, you’ve probably encountered the Electric Dandelions currently lighting up the cobblestoned streets. The towering steel and acrylic flower sculptures—created by artist Abram Santa Cruz and LA-based collective Liquid PXL and curated by Art House Live and Fired-up Management—are the lightest in a series of light-based art projects for the neighborhood.
In the winter of 2019–2020, Wave-Field, Variation O, brought a sense of play to Pier 17, with see-saws that glowed in the dark created by CS Design and Lateral Office. Now, with Electric Dandelions, Abram Santa Cruz and Liquid PXL draw on the fleeting beauty of fireworks to inspire a sense of wonder in those who experience the sculptures along Fulton Street. “I hope we’re able to bring joy to the neighborhood and brighten up people’s moods after such an intense year,” says Santa Cruz. “I used to live in New York, and I remember the somber mood in Lower Manhattan after 9/11. After leaving NYC for LA, I always wanted to come back to New York with an art exhibit.” During his time in the city, Santa Cruz liked in Brooklyn Heights and Williamsburg, with views of the Brooklyn Bridge and the skyline of the Seaport and Financial District. “So for me,” he says, “it’s nostalgic to have the Electric Dandelions in this part of New York. I’m very happy to be able to bring some light to this part of the city.”
A lot of work went into the installation’s creation, and Santa Cruz admits that sometimes he and his peers can get wrapped up in their drive for perfection in the finished product. But, ultimately, “I think it’s every artist’s dream to have their work appreciated.”
To help us fully appreciate their creative process, Santa Cruz shares some behind-the-scenes details — the Electric Dandelions by the numbers:
There are 10 Electric Dandelion structures.
Santa Cruz and Liquid PXL spent 4 weeks on fabrication before shipping the pieces to New York — cutting, welding, sanding and painting each component, including the dandelion spheres, bases, seat supports, cross bars and light-tube brackets.
The team cut and pressed 1,100 sphere pieces, drilled 2,200 holes, and used 900 acrylic panels and 2,700 zip-ties to create the 90-lb spheres for the dandelions.
Once in NYC, it took 5 core crew members to put the installation together over 5 days, with 2 more team members assisting with heavy equipment.
- Measures 28 feet tall at its highest point
- Weighs 2,600 pounds
- Has a base that’s 7 feet in diameter
- Is lit with 41 light tubes powered by 1,000 watts of 110v
- Contains 2,500 LEDs
In total, the project used:
- 1,000 feet of wiring
- 820 meters of LEDs
- 10,000 pounds of metal
- 16,000 pounds of concrete
- 750 bolts
And the number of smiles the Dandelions have brought to the faces of Seaport locals, workers, visitors and passersby? Too many to count.
Electric Dandelions is on display at 19 Fulton Street through April 30, 2021. Share your photos and tag us on Instagram @SeaportDistrict.NYC.