SOL Grotto


Matarozzi Pelsinger Builders fabricated this art installation on behalf of Berkeley Botanical Garden's "Natural Discourse: Artists, Architects, Scientists & Poets in the Garden."  The SOL Grotto is located on Strawberry Creek in the Berkeley Botanical Gardens. Inside is an array of nearly 1,400 glass tubes that transmit light into the cool, dark space. The tubes were recovered from Solyndra, the now defunct solar company who used them in their solar panels.  The glass tubes take on the form of a waterfall and are illuminated naturally to an electric-blue color from the ambient light, changing throughout the day. The sound of a waterfall is present inside The SOL Grotto and the combination of sound, light, views and coolness filtering through the cracks in the flooring creates a highly sensorial space.

Photographer | Matthew Millman
Beneficiary | Berkeley Botantial Gardens
Architect | Rael San Fratello Architects