To paraphrase Van Morrison, it's a marvelous night for a moonGARDEN.
It's s a new exhibit that premieres this September 29, courtesy of Discovery Green and Houston First Corporation. Designed by Montreal art collective Lucion Traveling Light of Montreal, moonGARDEN is a series of 22 illuminated spheres — ranging in size from six to 30 feet in diameter — that will transform the park into a magical moonscape. These globes will be brought to life with shadow theaters, dynamic lighting, and interactive elements that'll have visitors becoming part of the experience.
MoonGARDEN has actually been around since 2012, with Lucion installing customized variations of it in major cities all over the world. The Houston stop — the first in Texas and the largest ever presented in the U.S. — includes 11 spheres with shadow theaters featuring Houston/Discovery Green-related illustrations and three interactive "Exposure" spheres, which allow visitors to draw on the surface of the orb with any light source. The spheres will replaced in groupings throughout the park and neighboring Avenida Houston.
Discovery Green has scheduled several, moon-themed events around the exhibit, which will be visible during all park hours. These events include a screening of the Cher-Nicolas Cage movie Moonstruck on opening night, "Moon Dance," a date night featuring Dance Houston's lively lessons on the Anheuser-Busch Stage, and "Goodnight, Moon," a pajama party featuring milk and cookies (free to the first 100 children) and readings of the children's book in various languages.
On the exhibit's final night on October 7, there will be a four-course harvest dinner with wine pairings, served outside on the deck overlooking the exhibit. There will also be a moonGARDEN Lounge (sponsored by IKEA) open throughout the run, over on the Jones Lawn, and the Grove will offer artisanal moon pies and moonshine cocktails during its extended happy hour.
All in all, moonGARDEN is another glowing instance of the kind of spectacular, visual splendor that has made Discovery Green, which has been celebrating its tenth anniversary this year, a prime destination for events like this. “Lucion has translated these themes into whimsical imagery that tells the diverse, dynamic story of Houston and Discovery Green," says president and park director Barry Mandel, "and we hope that longtime supporters and new visitors will be equally enchanted by moonGARDEN.”
moonGARDEN rises on Saturday, September 29 and runs through October 7 at Discovery Green, 1500 McKinney St. 7:30-10 pm. Free. For more information, visit the official site.