Stratus is a light installation in the historic lobby of 315 Montgomery created by New York-based design studio SOFTlab. The installation comprises two layers of brass pipes containing a series of LED lights programmed with a subtle light pattern that simulates air flow.
Commissioned by New York–based Vornado Realty Trust, the installation provides a changing atmospheric backdrop for the lobby that can be seen from the street
SOFTlab arranges the brass tubes along two staggered layers, punctuated by a cloud-like pattern of laster-cut holes that gives the animated light a three dimensional effect. This effect is enhanced as the light from one tube reflects off of its neighbors. During the day the assembly comes together in the shape of a light organ. At night, the tubes fade into the background and the cloud-like LEDs appear to flow through the back wall of the lobby.
315 Montgomery street, part of the bank of America complex, is a 16-story office tower in the financial district of San Francisco which was originally built in 1922. On view from the street 24 hours a day, stratus provides a minimal backdrop to the rich detailing of the lobby. The installation measures 126″ tall by 120″ wide by 8″ deep and is on view from the street 24 hours a day.
The LEDs are programmed to produce a generative cloud-like animation that is never the same. Two layers of staggered brass tubes allowing the LEDs to reflect off their neighbors combining the white light with the color of the brass giving the installation a thickened material-like quality.
The installation is detailed in a way to make it as minimal as possible against the rich architectural detailing of the lobby.