After Dark | Leo Villareal

Leo Villareal

Light Matrix (MIT), 2016

240 stainless steel rods, 17, 280 LED lights

Light installation

Dimensions variable

Purchased with MIT Percent-for-Art Funds


An adventurous tour of MIT’s more remote buildings. Best followed in the evening so that night has fallen for the later pieces.


This tour was created by Joseph Faraguna, class of 2020, in Bioengineering and with a minor in Computer Science. Faraguna was a List Center Student Guide for all four years of his undergraduate career. 


Leo Villareal’s Light Matrix bridges the gap between intangible computer code and concrete visuals, inviting the viewer to search for programmed patterns in the changing lights. The piece creates an amorphous canopy through its 17,280 white LEDs affixed to 240 stainless steel rods. Villareal aimed to lead viewers to discover patterns and elements on their own more than to seek and find one specified experience. Watch the piece as you approach and then walk around and under. What do you notice about the different patterns and directions of movement?


Building Number: E52

Accession Number: PFA.2016.002