The Contemporary Arts Center undertook a $1.1 million lobby renovation last year. Since reopening, the dramatic lobby space, originally designed by internationally acclaimed Zaha Hadid, has added the wonderful Collective Espresso as a cafe operator, and now also includes a kinetic light display along its famed seven-story “Urban Carpet” wall.
The installation, entitled Cincinnati Swing, was designed by Erwin Redl and includes 160 pendulums distributed in a diamond grid pattern following the 4×4′ grid of the concrete panels. The installation is complemented nicely by Matt Kotlarczyk’s cloud-like chandeliers. In combination with one another, they provide a truly unique lighting scheme for the lobby space, which also features the CAC’s museum shop.
While the following four-and-a-half-minute video gives a nice preview of the light exhibit, it is highly recommended to check it out in person. Fortunately, in addition to the lobby space always being free, the CAC in its entirety is now also free thanks to the Johnson Foundation and a collection of 50 young professionals.
Open from 7am to 6pm during the week, and 9am to 3pm on Saturday and Sunday, the lobby of the CAC is free and open to the public. Of course, it does cost money to purchase food and drink from Collective Espresso, along with items from the museum store.
The CAC is easily accessible from virtually every Metro bus via the Government Square Transit Center a block away, and is also within several blocks of numerous Red Bike stations.