In 2005, BAA appointed the Contemporary Art Society to commission an internationally renowned artist for a feature public sculpture at the new Heathrow Airport Terminal 5. Following an extensive selection process, Turner Prize-nominated artists Langlands & Bell were awarded the commission, and the Contemporary Art Society worked with them from design to completion to install a spectacular artwork.
Moving World (Night & Day) consists of two immense neon and glass walls installed at either end of the pedestrian plaza that fronts the terminal building designed by Rogers, Stirk, Harbour + Partners. On each wall a luminous arc of intense blue neon spells out airport codes from across the globe. At the foot of each wall is a granite plinth that invites visitors to stop, rest and enjoy the play of light. The neon is programmed to give a constantly changing pattern of moving blue light that reflects in the glass walls of the new terminal building throughout the day and night.
Moving World (Night & Day) is a triumph of public art, a focal large-scale outdoor installation that was created to enhance the experience of the Terminal 5 complex. Reflecting the excitement of international travel, Langlands and Bell describe their sculpture as “a poetry of places where landing points offer departures into the imaginary, and result in unimagined arrivals.”
Langlands & Bell, Moving World (Night & Day), 2008
glass, steel, neon, granite, electronics