Have you ever had a blackout in your neighborhood or been without electricity for a period of time? This is something that we are not used to, but according to the International Energy Agency there are an estimated 1.4 to 1.6 billion people in the world without electricity. The idea of solar energy has been a popular alternative to providing electricity in to parts of the world where it may not be accessible to install electrical wiring. Artist and innovator Olafur Eliasson is most known for his installation art. Eliasson along with engineer Frederik Ottesen, has developed a product called the Little Sun, which they hope to bring to all countries and neighborhoods around the world missing electricity and light. Little Sun is a high quality, solar-powered LED lamp delivering over 5 hours of fluorescent light when fully charged. Since 1985, the brand Absolut has been active in the art world, having collaborated with more than 550 artists and commissioning over 850 projects. To kick off 2014, Absolut decided to connect with Olafur Eliasson and the Little Sun Project to promote the idea at one of the biggest music festivals in the world. Coachella Music Festival located in Coachella Valley, California brings together the a huge list of amazing bands and music in conjunction with some out of this world works of installation artwork and creative art. Absolut was the only official spirits sponsor this year at Coachella and because of that they had their own tent to promote Little Sun. Just to the right of the main stage, located inside one of the beer gardens was a tent known as the Absolut Little Sun Tent. From the outside it looks like a normal white tent, but as you get closer to the entrance you notice instantly how dark and different it actually is. If you’re walking into the tent during the day, you will notice a drastic change as you step inside. Darkness fills the tent and Little Sun lights made up most of the décor. There was an even darker room known as the sunlight graffiti room, where you could test out the Little Sun freely while having your picture taken. The picture showed the trails of light depending on how you used it. Aside from all the art concepts installed by Olafur Eliasson, there were live DJ sets throughout each day and custom curated cocktails such as the Eternal Sunshine Tonic, which included Absolut Vodka, house-made basil and grapefruit tonic. This was very well done with fitting the vibe of the festival as well as the Little Sun Project. Olafur had this to say about the Little Sun Project being involved with the Coachella Music Festival, "You are in the dark, waiting again. The music is playing. Let’s dance. Suddenly the stage is yours. How does this feel? Music, art, light connect the world. Let’s Little Sun." The Little Sun Project is an idea that has such potential to help change the world for the better. I fully support this idea for the fact that it is practical and a very possible product to provide the world who is missing light in their lives. Little Sun was a success at the Coachella Music Festival and already a success in other parts of the world. Little Sun currently has distribution in eight African countries: Zimbabwe, Uganda, Kenya, Burundi, Senegal, Ethiopia, Nigeria and South Africa, as well as in Europe, the United States, Canada, Australia, and Japan.
July 13, 2014