August 27, 2017

A couple of weeks ago, we booked ourselves in at Kew Gardens for an immersive evening discovering the extraordinary lives of bees. While The Hive is open daily, we wanted to visit one of the exclusive after hours events to make sure we got to make the most of the pretty lights, and watch the sunset whilst inside The Hive.

The hive stands at 17 metres tall, and uses 1,000 LED lights to make it an exciting visual and sound experience. Both the sound and lights inside The Hive are sparked by the vibrations of bee activity at a hive just a short distance away inside Kew Gardens, measured by an accelerometer placed inside the active hive. The activity is echoed by the sounds becoming more intense, and the lights flickering more rapidly the more movement there is. The meaurements are sent real-time so whilst we were there, there were moments of intense activity but it was mainly calm and steady, while the honeybees began to relax after a hard day at work.


The hive was absolutely mesmerising with the 1000 LED lights lining the whole interior of The Hive sparkling almost randomly. The lighting patterns are driven from the vibrations the same as the sound, making it addictive to watch. The best way to experience it was to find yourself a spot around the edge of the inside, allowing you to sit down and stare up at the Hive, and take in the beautiful sights and sounds.


The soundscape was a composition of both bee sounds and an ensemble of musicians, which grew in intensity according to the vibrations from the bees. The Hive grew in beauty as the night went on, with the bright lights standing out against the dark night sky. It was hard to pull ourselves away from it, we could have sat looking up all night if we were allowed. 

Have you got plans to visit The Hive? We would love to see your pictures if you do, because there is just so many beautiful angles to capture!

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Lots of love, Antonia and Imogen x

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