People Power #2: Solar Swarm

March – April 2012

Public Viewing – Tuesday 27 March, 6.30pm – Sunday 21 April, 10pm

Students from The Petchey Academy in Hackney switched on Solar Swarm, a solar powered light installation that they have created with Hackney’s ‘haberdashery for technology’, Technology Will Save Us.

The Swarm celebrates the return of Spring (at last) and lights up the side of The White Building, Hackney Wick’s centre for art, technology and sustainability.

At the same time, 30 children at Chisenhale Primary School in Tower Hamlets made Thirsty Plants – solar powered plant hydration detectors for their pots of spring bulbs which they presented at the White Building.

“People Power has developed into an excellent programme, harnessing the inspirational approach that an artist can take, to unlock interest in STEM subjects in secondary and primary schools. We look forward to working with many more schools in this way.” Fiona Fieber, Head of Learning & Participation, SPACE

Solar Swarm has been made as part of People Power, the Bloomberg sponsored school programme devised by SPACE. The programme uses creativity to engage pupils with STEM (science, technology, engineering, maths) subjects. Working with Technology Will Save Us (tenants in SPACE’s MediaLab on Mare Street), Year 7 and 8 students explored renewable energy systems, electronics and the potential they provide for making with technology, through a series of talks, demonstrations and hackathons plus a visit to the Cofely Energy Centre on the Olympic site.

For images and press information contact: Hannah Barton,

With thanks to Powercor for generously providing the solar panel to power the Solar Swarm.

Generously funded by our sponsor Bloomberg, as part of the Bloomberg ON programme at The White Building.