Project
Virgin Atlantic Glitterball

Location
London, United Kingdom

Completed
2007

Designer
Freestate

Photographer
Adam Scott
Type
Transport

Discipline
Strategy + Branding




Speirs + Major worked in close collaboration with brand designers Freestate to create a luminous sculpture as part of the Virgin Atlantic drop-off area.

Virgin Airways have always maintained a strong passenger experience at Heathrow and were keen to have a focal point at the entrance to their new Terminal 3 building.

The Glitterball, as it is commonly known, creates an impressive moiré effect. The lighting, concealed in a plinth below, emphasises the visual play of the moiré effect by highlighting the sculpture in two colours. The internal faces are revealed in white light, while the outer edges of the slatted globe are contrasted in red. Additionally, the red LEDs are carefully controlled in intensity to create subtle variations to the piece throughout the evening.

The suspended sculpture marks the beginning of the Upper Class passenger’s airport experience. The Glitterball is made from 65 parallel golden rings and responds to speed and movement as the passenger is driven around the drop-off area. The same moiré effect was used by the designers Freestate in other areas of Virgin Atlantic’s Terminal 3.

Freestate are best known for their work for Channel 4's Big 4 and for bespoke design and marketing crossover projects.

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