With events spread throughout the Green Line corridor, light rail will play a major role in this year’s Northern Sparks arts festival.
That’s especially true for CHAOS ON THE GREEN LINE, one of 70 public art pieces that will be featured during the all-night festival that begins on Saturday, June 10, and continues through sunrise the following morning.
CHAOS ON THE GREEN LINE invites participants to don a virtual reality cardboard viewer while riding between Snelling Avenue and Lexington Parkway. It is believed to be the world’s first virtual reality experience using public transit.
“As the train rolls by, the world as you know it will fall away from view and be replaced by a whole new world we’ve created – one affected by climate change,” said Todd Boss, executive and artistic director at Motionpoems.
Boss created the experience with help from dozens of animators and creatives from local agencies like Pixel Farm, Manufacture, Egg Creative and Fallon Worldwide.
The GPS-activated visuals reflect Northern Spark’s “Climate Chaos, People Rising” theme, which encourages people to a radically climate-altered world and actions they can take to reduce their environmental impact.
Boss said the experience is more poetic than blunt, but that he hopes the impact will still be plenty powerful. “I don’t know that it will change people’s minds but I do think it will touch them and stir a lot of emotions and thoughts the way good art should,” he said.
Story circles, group weaving, a film festival and a night market in the Little Mekong cultural district are among the many other planned activities. Activities will be focused around several Green Line station areas, including the U.S. Bank Stadium, West Bank, East Bank, Snelling Avenue, Lexington Parkway, Western Avenue and Union Depot stations.
A light rail train that was wrapped in custom-designed artwork promoting the event will also be in service throughout the evening.
Eventgoers can ride free on all buses and trains during the event using a downloadable pass available on the event website. Green Line trains will run at least every 30 minutes throughout the evening.
To learn more about Northern Spark or download a free ride pass, visit 2017.northernspark.org.