What is Blunite?
Blunite is a community effort based in Isla Vista, California to stand together for the month of May. Originally founded in order to heal and illuminate a community in the aftermath of darkness; Blunite focuses on encouraging unity and hope in Isla Vista and beyond.
We encourage local business, campus buildings and individual households to "glow blue" by lighting Isla Vista in blue LED's. Whether placing tea lights in windows, changing bulbs to blue ones or outlining our buildings in light; we invite the community to join us in solidarity and envisioning a bright future.
Blunite has evolved into more than just the illuminating our community. We are actively trying to bring everyone together in positive and unifying ways. *We host an annual carnival that brings the student population and the families of Isla Vista together to celebrate the community we all share. We also make sure to honor those we have lost with a memorial event held to help heal the community and move it forward in a positive direction.
*Past endeavors include a large-scale light carnival that brought together over 2,500 students and families of Isla Vista, an all-day memorial event with therapy dogs and on-site counselors, art installations dedicated to the victims and their families, a 3,000 person tea light vigil, and a 1,500 bag illuminated pathway.
Have an idea for an event? Want to help out? Check out our JOIN BLUNITE tab
University of California, Santa Barbara
In early Spring of 2015, UCSB students participating in IV OpenLab were brought together by artist and professor Kim Yasuda in order to brainstorm ways to bridge the connection between UCSB and its student community called Isla Vista. Using art as a way to connect has been a long time passion for Yasuda, but it was only the aftermath of a tragedy that ignited the project into fruition; the idea to unify by light. Their ideas connected not only the campus and its adjacent town, but also spread beyond boundaries by inviting people to participate in a movement of unity and solidarity.
Using the blue LED as a symbol, (inspired by the blue LED invented by Nobel-winning UCSB Professor, Shuji Nakamura) Blunite focused its efforts on getting the community involved in enacting a visual representation of shared love and support. The movement caught on quickly, with various levels of the community participating and showing support.
On May 23, 2015 the university held its first memorial service honoring the victims of the tragedy by adopting Blunite’s blue LED tea lights instead of the traditional candles. The picturesque pathway from UCSB’s Storke Tower to Isla Vista’s People’s Park was illuminated by more than 3,000 students and 5,000 tea lights. The success and recognition from the memorial event established Blunite as the symbol for healing and uniting the community through bright hope. The community response to Blunite in its first year was so overwhelmingly positive that it has now become an annual tradition to celebrate the community in the month of May.
Founded, created and executed in 2015
Professor at UCSB
UCSB Class of 2016
UCSB Class of 2017
Those who have helped us succeed along the way
Thanks to all those who are helping to illuminate our community through their hosting, sponsorship and helping hands:
Co-Sponsors of Blunite Events:
*Isla Vista Community Relations Committee
*Isla Vista Tenants Union
Support from Community Businesses:
*Jay Freeman, Saurik.com
*Isla Vista Food Co-Op
Support fromSanta Barbara County:
UCSB Student Organizations:
*Associated Students Candlelight Vigil
*AS Resident Hall Association
*AS Office of External Affairs
UCSB Academic and Administrative Offices:
*Chancellors Coordinating Committee on Isla Vista
*Department of Art
UCSB IV OpenLab:
*Faculty Advisor: Kim Yasuda, Department of Art
*Community Advisors: Rodney Gould IVRPD,
*Jay Freeman, Saurik.LLC, Diana Puente-Collins, OE