Everyone knows the light bulb is the universal symbol for an idea, but no one thinks about the millions of tiny connections that need to occur for that idea to be realized. Well … almost no one. Yukon artists Michel Gignac and Gorellaume have thought about it quite a bit. So much so that they’ve incorporated it into a new installation at NorthLight Innovation called Through the Thought Process (Eureka). It’s the first collaboration between Gignac, who often works in sculpture, and Gorellaume, who focuses on figurative drawing.   

They say the piece mirrors the process of an idea in that both begin with a tripped switch. In the case of the installation, it’s quite literal.

As you enter the front door of NorthLight, there’s a silver light switch on a post near The Poor Creature cafe. Follow a single black cable from that switch and you’ll find it leads to a tangle of colourful wires sweeping along the wall, thinning and thickening and splicing off in a dozen different directions on its way to a single lightbulb hanging in Cospace, waiting to fire.

What does it take to get there?” says Gignac of the lit bulb. On the way to illumination, there’s a mix of emotions, triumphs and roadblocks. All are highlighted by Gorellaume’s illustrations, which appear along the length of the wires.

Hand-painted on the wall, stoats, jump and run. There’s a pensive coyote. A fox curled in a tight circle, sleeping.

Gorellaume says he and Gignac don’t want to be prescriptive in their interpretation of the piece, but, in his mind, you can put human feelings to the critters. The stoats are in the early excited stages of an idea. The coyote, at the top of a wall the wires must wind around, is considering roadblocks. The fox is sleeping it off, perhaps hoping to wake up refreshed and with new ideas tomorrow.

Cospace, makespace and community members are invited to flip the switch anytime they experience a Eureka moment at NorthLight.