Icelandic artist Olafur Eliasson has made these small solar-powered lamps for people who have limited access to reliable energy – almost a quarter of the world's population (+ movie).
Little Sun can produce five hours of light when charged in the sun for five hours.
Above image is by Little Sun
Eliasson hopes to bring light to people in remote locations and reduce their reliance on hazardous kerosene lanterns.
Above image is by Merklit Mersha
The artist, who is best known for his Weather Project installation at Tate Modern in 2003, worked with solar engineer Frederik Ottesen on the project.
Above image is by Michael Tsegaye
The Little Sun lamps will also be used at a series of 'Tate Blackouts' at the Tate Modern gallery in London this summer, where visitors will be invited to look at works of art in the dark.
Above image is by Mihret Kebede
Tate Blackouts will take place between 10pm and midnight on 28 July, 4 August, 11 August and 18 August. The events are free with the purchase of a Little Sun.
Above image is by Tomas Gislason
The gallery will also host an exhibition about the Little Sun project from 28 July to 23 September.
Above image is by Andy Paradise
The movies are by Tomas Gislason.
Above image is by Andy Paradise
Here's some more information from Tate Modern:
As part of Olafur Eliasson: Little Sun at Tate Modern, to be launched on 28 July 2012, visitors will be invited to look at works of art in the dark using only the light of Eliasson’s Little Sun solar-powered lamps. The presentation at Tate Modern has been developed for the London 2012 Festival that runs across the UK until 9 September 2012.
Olafur Eliasson is probably best-known for his highly successful The weather project (2003), part of the Unilever Series in Tate Modern’s Turbine Hall, which drew over 2 million visitors during its five-month installation.
The artist has developed the Little Sun solar-powered lamp with the engineer Frederik Ottesen to focus attention on the power of solar light to improve lives. Around 1.6 billion people worldwide live without access to mains electricity. Many of them rely on kerosene lanterns for lighting, which is both expensive and a health hazard. Little Sun brings light to people in off-grid locations, enabling them to work, reduce household expenses and improve the quality of life.
Starting on 28 July, people will be invited to participate in Tate Blackouts on Saturday nights after ordinary museum hours. For two hours, the lights will go off in the former power station and visitors can look at the works of art in the suite of galleries devoted to Tate Modern’s Surrealist collection using only the light of Little Sun lamps. This echoes the 1938 International Surrealist Exhibition at the Galérie des Beaux-Arts, Paris, where Man Ray (as ‘Master of Light’) supplied the visitors with torches to explore the labyrinthine galleries.
Beyond the Tate Blackout events, Olafur Eliasson: Little Sun will feature in a space on the third floor of the gallery from 28 July to 23 September, where visitors can learn about solar power, the global energy challenge, light and its importance in and for life. It will also include a special set-up for people to do light graffiti using the Little Sun and offer the opportunity to buy a lamp for £16.50 (€22). In off-grid areas the price will be reduced to about half that amount.
Little Sun produces 5 hours of light when it is charged in the sun for 5 hours. It facilitates the creation of small businesses to sell the lamp and, by concentrating profits at the point of need, it aims to promote economic growth in regions of the world where electricity is not available, reliable, affordable, or sustainable. Little Sun is light for studying, sharing, cooking, and earning. It is light for life.
Little Sun events in September will include a seminar and the premiere of 16 short films on light, life, and Little Sun by filmmakers from off-grid areas around the world.
Olafur Eliasson: Little Sun
28 July – 23 September 2012
Tate Blackouts will take place on the following dates from 22.00 to Midnight:
The events are free with the purchase of a Little Sun.