Rainbows On the Floor

Rainbows On the Floor

Last Friday I was delighted to guest post for Luciane over at Home Bunch. Did you catch this ‘Cool or Fool’ feature? Well, today I thought I would expand on the multi-coloured striped theme of that post. Read on… and warning, this post is photo heavy, but I think you will be amazed at what you see!

Jenna Ration G

Contemporary visual artist Jim Lambie specializes in colourful sculptural installations made from everyday modern materials. And one of his trademarks is applying brightly coloured vinyl tape in patterns of continuous lines to floors, most often of galleries. The vinyl tape Lambie uses is an everyday material, but has the capacity to alter the dynamics of a space. The tape is applied following the shape of the room and its architectural details, transforming it from a soft, quiet area into an energetic and emotionally charged sensory zone. Lambie’s creations often trick the eye, confusing, even disorienting, the viewer. According to Lambie, covering an object somehow evaporates its hard edge, and so the artistry is in creating so many edges that they all dissolve, leaving one to wonder if the room is expanding or contracting…

Would you alter the dynamics of your space in this way? Let’s take a look.

Apartment Therapy

Did you notice, this is the same floor from the first photo? Isn’t it interesting how the perspective changes when you see the whole area compared to just a snap shot of it?

Hirshhorn Museum

Since the tape follows the shape of the room and its architectural details, what do you think the shape of this room is? And even though the photo is straight, doesn’t it look like the bottom edge is cropped on an angle? That’s an example of how the multiple edges can trick the eye.

Apartment Therapy

Notice how the tape curves around the far side of the column, but mirrors the shape of the stairs on this side? This is an example of how the tape is applied to follow the architectural details in the room.


Dying to know what’s in this space! Do you think it’s from the same space as the photo above?


Here the tape follows the square base of the column rather than the column’s curve. This creates the illusion that the floor is an extension of the column base.

iiiinspired Blog

At first glance, doesn’t it look like there could be a step down on the right?

iiiispired Blog

Even though the square columns are outlined flat against the floor, doesn’t the diamond shape in the middle make it feel like there is a gradual incline to the base of the columns?

Didactic – Richard Cassel

Have you noticed the slight variations in the colour combinations of the designs? Lambie picks the tape colours and layout for each design, but he leaves it up to his assistants to coordinate how the colours are put together within the design.


This is a great example of how Lambie’s design can trick the eye. Doesn’t it remind you of a kaleidoscope?

Chic Cham Blog

Imagine applying the tape to a set of stairs. This close-up gives you a better idea of just how intricate the process is. Every mitered corner must fit perfectly or the design will become skewed, especially when you factor the risers into the equation.


Can you tell where each step starts and ends? Look closely to the left, and you’ll see…

Joanne Mattera Art Blog

Did you notice this photo is from the same space as the one above it? A lot easier to see where the steps are now, right?

Oh My News

See how the design of this floor leads you to, and emphasizes each sculpture, yet still manages to mirror the long lines of the ceiling?

Well, are you ready to take the leap yet? Want to create a ‘Lambie’ design in your home? What if I showed you spaces you might relate to a little more?


Yes, this is a Lambie staircase. But I think it would be easier to paint! How about you?


And how do you not get dizzy going down these stairs? Do you think they’d be easier to navigate in the dark?


Notice how the base of the newel post is mirrored on the step below it. And see the green in the center of the stairs? That’s the mastery of this application. You have to make sure as you extend the design, you retain the overall perspective of the design. Because remember, the tape is applied by following the shape of the space and its architectural details. In this case, the newel post is an architectural detail.

Apartment Therapy

So, now I’m curious. Do you think it would it be fun to live in geometric colour like this everyday?

I  hope you have a bright, cheerful weekend! And don’t forget, today is the last day to enter our special GIVEAWAY. You have until midnight tonight, and tomorrow we will announce the lucky winner 🙂

Thank you for stopping by!

8 thoughts on “Rainbows On the Floor”

  • No I do not think I would like to live with this pattern on my floor! Some of the pictures are great- but most I just feel dizzy! Amazing talent he has- but I don’t think I would like in my home. 🙂

  • Good morning, my sweet Sheila! 🙂

    Wow! I got dizzy just by looking at this! LOL I love the colors, honestly, but I could not have the stairs painted like that. I think it would great to add some strong stripes in a playroom. I like the energy that comes from it.

    Wishing a very blessed weekend, my friend.

    Big hugs to you!

    Luciane at HomeBunch.com

    PS: loved your “Cool or Fool” last week. Thank you again, sweetie.

  • Wow! This is the first post I read this morning and I am so glad that I did! Thank you so much for inspiring me today 🙂 I love the color inspiration.


  • That is a LOT of colour in one space& does make me quite dizzy …yikes! I can appreciate the trickery involved; how it leads one further along in those galleries, and how it become part of the art. It’s actually quite brilliant and a little twisted at the same time, lol! Great post Sheila and very interesting! Have a wonderful weekend in the sunshine lady!!

  • Whoa I almost fell off my chair!!! I find those patterns so intriguing how they look one way and then another. Such a fascinating thing. Who knew. It reminds me of what my brother joked about when I parked my car in front of his house for a few days …….. He joked on if I leave it any longer there will be rainbows going all the way from his driveway down to the street. You know when old cars drip oil and the rainbow spills out from the engine, well mine does not do that but that was just a brotherly joke coming from him to his sister.

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