City Roller

Posted on May 25, 2014

A commission by the LA Cultural Plaza to create an interactive installation for kids (7-10) to explore and understand the changing Urban landscape of LA in the last 100 years in the downtown area.


The installation focuses on comparing 2 distinct years, 1924 and 2010 to demonstrate the change that the city of Los Angeles has gone through during that time period.

For each year a 3D digital model of the city was constructed and transposed onto a cylinder. 


In one case, the cylinder was segmented into 1/4 inch slices which were laser cut and assembled to create a physical model of the cylinder containing the urban fabric and the buildings as inverse impressions on its surface.


The other drum was milled flat carving the volume of the buildings into the expanded Foam PVC, and then heated until it was soft, and then it was rolled around another drum to create the impression cylinder.


Each cylinder is then rolled across a bed of  material (sand, polymer) to create an impression of the city building fabric for the given time period. The change in the city becomes evident by comparing the 2 impressions made by the cylinders which are superimposed on top of one another.