Sid Odedra and Rebecca Board, Middlesex

Hi-tech heart puts students in romantic mood

Love is in the air for Middlesex University students, after a giant three metre heart appeared on campus.

The eye-catching creation was designed and built by three recent Middlesex graduates and is part of a student engagement campaign with a topical romantic theme.

The heart is made with over 7,000 individual LEDs and hundreds of custom-designed circuit boards, with lights controlled by software that was also designed by the team of former Product Design and Engineering students. 

Because each of the 7,000+ lights can be individually programmed, the heart can also display text, animation and pictures.

The piece was created for the ‘I (HEART) Middlesex’ campaign, which sees Middlesex students, staff and graduates sharing stories about why they love their university.

Lead designer Sid Odedra said: “The university asked us to come up with something special to create a buzz among students and so far the reaction has been amazing. 

"We had a number of weeks to plan the project but needed to assemble it over one weekend so put in a couple of all night sessions to make sure everything was working perfectly. 

"Everyone is delighted with the results.”

The heart, built on a bespoke metal frame, has even caught the attention of local residents keen to peer through the campus doors to see why a glowing 3m x 2m heart has appeared in their neighbourhood.

The design team includes recent Product Design and Engineering graduates Sid Odedra from Barnet, Ilyan Kukushliev from Kingston and Rebecca Board from Putney who gained their first taste of creating showpiece products through the university’s partnership with new media designer and lighting pioneer Moritz Waldemeyer.

During their time at Middlesex this saw them working on props or effects for events including the Olympic closing ceremony, Take That’s last tour and the video for Ellie Goulding’s single ‘Lights’.

Further information:

See a video of the heart being made

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