On March 8, 2017, Hotel Indigo Savannah Historic District introduced their new six-story art installation, Radiant Awakening, which was created in 10 weeks by 10 students at the Savannah College of Art and Design (SCAD) Atlanta, by lighting it up with green LED lights in celebration of St. Patrick’s Day.
Created in collaboration with Noble Investment Group, the hotel’s ownership and SCAD’s Collaborative Learning Center, Radiant Awakening was crafted by a group of artists, illustrators, photographers, printmakers and sculptors.
“Once Noble acquired the property in 2014, we set about the task of bringing the Guckenheimer Building back to new life,” said Roy Croop, senior vice president of Asset Management at Noble Investment Group. “With so much being done to enliven the interior of the hotel, Noble wanted to treat the exterior similarly and ultimately create a work of art unlike any other in Savannah.”
While multiple murals are spread throughout the city, this incredible outdoor installation is something all of its own. It’s not the first time a SCAD student or alumni has created an multiple story installation in Savannah—just see the Montgomery Hall mural by Matt Hebermehl—but it is certainly something no other hotel boasts in all of Savannah and that’s thanks to a special collaboration with SCAD students.
“SCAD knows a thing or two about adaptive new use, art curation, and collaboration. When Noble decided to create a beautiful new hotel out of a bygone building in downtown Savannah, and needed a statement work worthy of its historic significance, they knew who to call,” said Paula Wallace, president and founder of the Savannah College of Art and Design. “Our students rose to the challenge (all six stories!) of this art installation to produce a sculpture that reflects both the hip tenor of Hotel Indigo’s renovated interior and the city’s suffusive charm. Savannah’s coolest new hotel coupled with the coolest creative minds—it’s a perfect match.
Known to students as “CLC,” the Collaborative Learning Center is a class of students from mixed majors and fields who work together with businesses, brands and organizations to generate design-based concepts and solutions for experiences, products, media and technology.
Though it was the class that created the ultimate design for Radiant Awakening, the initial concept was developed by SCAD student Natalie Cranor. During the class, each student presented individual designs and hers was selected by Noble. The intricate wrought ironwork found throughout the historic squares and gardens of the city inspired Cranor’s design, which was specifically developed after a wrought iron staircase railing from the Art Nouveau period, the same period in which the Guckenheimer Building was constructed in 1892.
Although it shares the same source of inspiration, the contemporary Radiant Awakening installation reveals a new design custom-made to work with the existing features of the building. The intricate pattern design was waterjet cut from metal sheets, and features tracks of LED lights installed behind the metal components, which will be programmed to change colors, adding visual interest and vibrancy to the design at night.
“Radiant Awakening is elegant, engaging, and our unique way of welcoming everyone to Hotel Indigo,” said Hotel Indigo Savannah General Manager Michael Cooper. “In a city known for such attention to historic detail, Radiant Awakening’s intricate ironwork provides a layer of visual interest to the original brick building facade.”