Fire Rainbow - CODAworx

Fire Rainbow

Submitted by Mark Abildgaard

Client: Yolo County

Location: Davis, CA, United States

Completion date: 2010

Artwork budget: $18,500

Project Team

Artist - Project Manager

Mark Abildgaard


Rene Steinke

Sacramento Art Glass

Public Art Agent

Danielle Whitmore

Yolo County arts Council

Public Art Agent

Yolo County Arts Council


This project was designed for a specific space in a public library where an existing skylight was the dominant feature. The height to the center of the skylight from the floor was 35 feet. The room dimensions below the sky light were 25'x25'. The sculpture was designed so that the lowest point was15 feet above the floor.


The request for this proposal specified that the light from the skylight was not to be obscured. By using the existing structural framework for the skylight to mount the cables which suspended the glass elements the sculpture filled the space without blocking the natural light. The cross beam structure of the skylight determined the design. The arrangement of the glass elements mirrored the pyramid space of the skylight in reverse.


This project was a collaboration between the design committee, the librarian, the master glassblower and myself. At the initial meeting before the design committee I presented a scale drawing and model as well a sample of the glass elements that I was proposing to use. This allowed me to answer all questions and make adjustments to the design in order to move forward with the project.

Additional Information

The concept for this project was a rare meteorological event where a cloud will appear to take on the colors of a rainbow. This happens when the angle of the sun hitting the water droplets in the cloud is very low. The event is called a Fire Rainbow. I wanted to create a cloud of rainbow colored glass raindrops that would be suspended under the skylight in the library.