Inspired by the ancients who used the sun and its shadows to tell time, this exquisitely detailed contemporary sundial was created by Melissa Joakim. The Toronto based artist has forged aluminum into an elegant form that resembles blooming flowers. As the sun moves through the day, the shadows cast by the sculpture’s blossoms grow. This practical tool is a ‘symbolic allusion to the cyclical nature of renewal, discovering our understanding of the sun, phases and shadow as concrete symbols that connect us to the solar system we live within.’
Traditionally, sundials have mottos inscribed on them. Joakim’s artwork is named for one of them—‘Umbra Transit Lux Manet” which means ‘The Shadow Passes, The Light Remains.”
“I work with light, sound and new media art, and I wanted to make a light-based artwork that functions without electricity and brings you into a connection with the planet.” Melissa Joakim
Joakim holds a BFA Spec. Hons in Theatre Production and Design from York University. As an installation artist, Melissa Joakim has extensive experience in lighting and projection design for live theatre, dance performance and concerts. A Dora Mavor Moore Award recipient for Scenic Design, she is actively touring internationally.
Joakim has designed for stages around the world including the Sydney Festival, The Kennedy Center in Washington DC and at the Arctic Circle Assembly in Iceland among many others. Umbra AP and its counterpart: an interactive light up moon dial were part of Toronto’s popular winter festival-Lumiere: The Art of Light. Joachim was also featured in Design Lines Magazine, BlogTO and interviewed on CityNews.