Marjan van Aubel made an interactive solar-powered installation for Lexus

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Marjan van Aubel

Marjan van Aubel has designed an installation for Lexus called ‘8 Minutes and 20 Seconds.’ The name is inspired by the time it takes for sunlight to reach Earth. The installation showcases a full-sized silhouette of Lexus’s zero-emission catalyst concept car, which is made using organic photovoltaic sheets.

The installation was exhibited during Milan Design Week 2024 but previously exhibited at the Institute for Contemporary Art during Design Miami and Art Basel.

“When speaking to Lexus’ color and sensory designer Viviana Hohenstein about how she imagined it would be like to sit inside the vehicle, she described there being a lot of glass and the driver being positioned a bit lower, like in a sports car,” stated van Aubel according to Wallpaper and added, “I thought about creating something life-size that would be an illusion; a 2D representation of a 3D car sliced into many parts.”

Courtesy of Lexus

The bamboo base of the installation conceals a battery and represents the electric platform of the Lexus LF-ZC, a Battery Electric Vehicle (BEV) model that is currently in development. Each sheet has a panel of organic photovoltaic (OPV) cells integrated at the bottom, while the surrounding blue-hued shape is non-active. This creates a flexible, translucent, and colored material. At night, multicolored lights from the installation’s base illuminate the sheets, transitioning them from cooler hues during the day to warmer red tones at night.

Alos, Random Studio and Matchless Build collaborated with Aubel to develop the project, including its experience and sound design by Sabina Charfauros and Malloy James.

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