Wuhan Optics Valley Square Complex Theme Ground Sculpture 2019, China, Beijing

Wuhan Optics Valley Square Public Artwork "Milky Way"

"Milky Way" is the largest single steel structure public artwork in China at present. The sculpture has 90 meters in diameter. The highest point is achieved at 40 meters. The total weight is more than 1,400 tons. It is located on the roundabout of Optics Valley Square in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China.

The design is inspired by the Milky Way Galaxy and the charming natural landscape of Wuhan, trying to express the implications of nature and development, tradition and future, ideas and technology in a soft and holistic way. The overall structure features a warm white tone. Full-color LED light tubes are adopted, with 7 shifting colors to produce rich visual effects and display the mystery and charm of the vast universe. The 7 lighting shades can be adjusted flexibly based on specific needs, and the changes between cool and warm lighting tones imply the varying scenery in different seasons.





Building or project owner : Wuhan Metro Group

Architecture : None

Project artist/ concept/ design/ planning : Executive team: Wang Zhong, Xiong Shitao, Li Zhen, Wu Dingyu, Shao Xuguang, Zhao Lina, Wei Zhenhua, Zhang Yiming, Wang Weidong, Liu Laiyu, Chang Zhigang, Ye Jun

Structural engineering : China Construction Science And Industry Corporation Ltd.

Facade design : CAPA(Beijing Central Academy Of Public Art )

Facade construction : Beijing Zhongshenya Carving Co., LTD

Kinetic engineering : None

Light design : The Central Academy of Fine Arts (CAFA) Visual Art Innovation Institute (VAII) Big Data and Smart City Lab

Technical layout light : None

Display content/ visuals/ showreel : None

Light hardware (LED hardware) : None

Lighting control software : None

Project co-ordination : The Culture Development Co, LTP of HIFA

Membrane skin : None

Interaction design/ programming : None

Project sponsor/ support : Wuhan Metro Group

Pixel or other basic module/ elements : None


Facade type and geometry (structure) : Single steel structure public artwork

Kind of light creation : In this busy life, we believed that the Milky Way lighting design intention is "flow". All light design became a team with all surrounding high-rise buildings environments, just like a gentle and unwinding clear stream between the steel and concrete peaks and softening the tough environment. It also means that "Wuhan Optical Valley" gathering people, information, capital, reflecting the flowing vitality of modern city elements. Secondly, visually, the structure of the viaduct integrates with the night sky from a close view. At a time when there are few opportunities to see the perfect night sky, it gives people a feeling of the stars falling to the ground and the heaven and earth is one so that people have a chance to think about the infinite night sky. Finally, the rhythm of light and color changes and interactive participation, it represents a kind of "mind flow".

Resolution and transmitting behaviour : "Milky Way" sculpture lighting design only uses three lamps, the power is 3W point light source, the power is 6 watts small light casting lamp and the power is 24 watts linear wall washing lamp, the lamps all use high brightness full color light source, the control system uses the international general DMX512 control mode.The whole lighting effect is divided into three parts: 1. Install a point light source lamp above the cross node of the mesh structure. 2. Install a small projection lamp above the cross node of the mesh structure to illuminate the mesh lines and dye the whole mesh structure. 3. The use of multi-point projection lamps on the banded structure illuminates the whole, to match the overall color changes.

Pixel distance : The high point space between is 1 meter; The wide point space between is 2 meters.

Luminace : Full color changes.

Urban situation : Wuhan referred to as "Han" or "Jiangcheng", is the capital of Hubei Province, the largest metropolis and the only sub-provincial city in central China. Wuhan Optical Valley Square project is a huge project, which is about 200 meters away from the center of the roundabout to the adjacent buildings. Besides, there are many tall buildings nearby, which makes the site appear a basin structure. Underneath the roundabout is a large commercial complex, which includes underpass tunnels for cars and subways to pass through, so it is a particularly complex infrastructure.

Description of showreel : The project tries to present the imagery of the magnificent Milky Way, through extracting and expressing Wuhan's landscape in an abstract, artistic manner and drawing on the romantic poetry of the name of "Optics Valley" where it sits. The overall sculpture spans 90 meters with a height of 40 meters, producing a magnificent volume. The undulating structural form symbolizes the mountain and water landscape of Wuhan, and the 3 prominent, vigorous curves represent the three towns of the city.

Participatory architecture & urban interaction

Community or communities involved : None

Host organization : Wuhan Metro Group

Legal form : None

Issues addressed : 1. The huge volume structure establish on a fragile surface 2. Complex visual environment 3. Wuhan is a very historic place We use "light" as a main visual element just for using Optical Valley. And use that element to create sculpture. With this main visual element and with the kind of strip shape. The Milky Way with the intent of the natural mountains and rivers, so "Milky Way" can be designed into a stable structure of the multi-point ground, thus the before we have put forward a few problems, from the theme, form, and structure are well-solved.

Impact : It is the largest single steel structure public art in China at present. And it is one of the key projects created for Wuhan to welcome the 7th World Military Games.

Tools developed : None

Tools used : Specifications: 9000×9000×4000cm, weight 1410t Material: steel structure, stainless steel forging spray fluorocarbon paint

Next steps : None


Photographer Long Qiuye

Photographer Long Qiuye

Photographer Long Qiuye


Photographer Long Qiuye

Photographer Long Qiuye

Photographer Long Qiuye