The Hive is an abstracted analogue of
a honeycomb. A rotational twist in the structure introduces movement, suggestive of a swarm. The form is
a 14m cube raised-up on columns, appearing almost to hover above the meadow. A spherical void hollowed from the centre, allows visitors to
enter. Walking beneath the sculpture, visitors may peer up through the
floor into the interior.

Accelerometers (vibration sensors)
are used to measure the activity of
a real bee colony living at Kew, feeding live signals to 1000 LED luminaires which line the interior of the Hive. Algorithms are used to convert these vibrational signals into lighting effects, allowing the Hive to convey a visual representation of the state of the colony.
This visual experience is complemented by a soundscape
based upon pre-recorded bee sounds and harmonious stems crafted by an ensemble of musicians.

The Hive represents the intrinsic
and important relationship between bee and human bringing together art, science, sound and landscape through an immersive and multi-sensory experience.


• 33,098 node (caps)

• 5,711 chord plates

• 31,176 spacer plates

• 28,782 rods

• 891 LEDs  

• 38 panels for the glass floor

• 72 balustrade panels  

• 80  fittings

• 18 columns

• 4 ring beam segments

• 33,098 node bolts

• 16,549 hex stud  

• 16,549 screw for locating node cap

• 2,856  estimated splice bolts

• 378  lengths of LED ductwork 



Artist + Creative Lead
Wolfgang Buttress

Architecture, landscape architecture
and environmental engineering: 

Structural Engineers:  Simmonds Studio

AV & Graphic Content:
Squint Opera  

Manufacture And Production: 
Stage One

Physicist and Bee Expert:
Dr. Martin Bencsik:  Nottingham
Trent University

Sound & Acoustic Consultants:
Hoare Lea