e-Luminate Cambridge 2017: what to expect

Pic: e-Luminate Festival

(UK) – Fifth edition of Cambridge-based light festival to explore ‘Play’ as 2017 theme. 

Taking Play as this year’s theme, Bouygues e-Luminate Cambridge Festival plans to amaze this February in a unique winter spectacle, with six nights of light installations created by local and international artists.

Now in its fifth year, the historic city of Cambridge with its stunning architecture provides the ideal backdrop for e-Luminate Cambridge. An event at the forefront of art and technology, ephemeral light art installations play with the diversity of the urban landscape, transforming everyday buildings and spaces into something magical for a few short hours.

From Gloria Ronchi and Claudio Benghi’s On the Wings of Freedom – a kaleidoscope of glowing butterflies, encasing coloured and dynamic LEDs that come alive at night along the river bank by Magdalene College, to Alice Turner’s The Cambridge Whale an anatomical reconstruction of the Museum of Zoology’s iconic Finback Whale specimen – all 24 outdoor installations can be found around the city and are completely free to explore.

Coinciding with the public switch-on of e-Luminate Cambridge on Friday 10 February, a night market will host a number of local arts and crafts, live entertainment, and food stalls in the city’s market square.

New for 2017’s Festival will be three special events at the Corn Exchange and Guildhalls. Tickets for each are available from www.cambridgelivetickets.co.uk, Box Office 01223 357851.

Friday 10 February, 8pm, Corn Exchange
e-Luminate Cambridge Opening event:

Dark & Light
The opening of the festival will be celebrated with a special event featuring performances from Dark Room – a multi-sensory journey through darkness to the light, performed by New York dancer Giorgia Bova with jazz pianist Andrea Manzoni and Cambridge’s musical collective We Are Sound, using voices and instruments to get under the skin of some of the world’s best tracks.
Tickets: £20

Sunday 12 February, Guildhalls

Hologram & Light Painting Workshops
Turn an object into a laser-produced hologram in this Make your own Hologram Workshop, a practical event combining physics, art and chemistry. Then get creative with your camera in the Light Painting Workshop, a great introduction to photography, using light to paint effects.
Tickets: £35 (hologram) £20 (light painting)

Monday 13 February
Cambridge Corn Exchange 12.30pm-8pm

Cambridge Guildhall 10am-6pm

Play of Light
e-Luminate Cambridge and co-curator Pat Kane have brought together an amazing collection of writers, performers, artists, academics, gamers and scientists for this special one-off event. Tickets are available to attend all or individual sessions.

Kane is not only familiar to a few who remember him as one half of the 80’s pop duo Hue and Cry, but he’s also the author of the Play Ethic, a book, website and research project where the theory of play is valued and explored. Visitors are invited to be a ‘player’ at this event.

Microsoft’s Helene Steiner will be reporting from the boundary between technology and nature, where inert materials shimmer with information and plants to talk to us through light. Also, visitors are invited to game on at Cambridge’s first eSports Day. Popular throughout Asia and the US, crowds can enjoy watching computer games players compete against each other on platforms old and new. Whether spectator or player, experts will show you the ropes and large audio-visual displays will help visitors enjoy the action.

The afternoon session covers biology, art, education and literature. Artist Tine Bech will show the playful way she uses light in her practice and Cambridge educationalists Pam Burnard and David Whitebread will showcase their latest findings on the essential power of play.

The evening session will include a line-up of natural born players in novels, magic and comedy. Curator Kane will host Nick Hornby, writer of Fever Pitch and About a Boy, conceptual magician Stuart Nolan and comedian Robin Ince (who will be exploring the light-bulb joke).

Festival Director Alessandra Caggiano said: ‘‘I am particularly excited about the theme of ‘Play of Light’ as it allows us to shine a light onto two very important aspects of Cambridge which we had not yet fully engaged with in previous years: gaming and sports. Be prepared to have some serious fun at e-Luminate Cambridge Festival 2017!’’

Key Installations

1. The Colours of the Rainbow
Shire Hall, Castle Hill
The rainbow as a symbol of equality and diversity to mark LGBT History Month.

2. Paradeigma
Created by Arup Light Lab and Cooledge
St Peter’s Church, Castle Hill
Cooledge and Arup teamed up at e-Luminate Cambridge this year to create PARADEIGMA; a shadow box of contrasts.

3. Victorian Gifs and Optical magic
Created by Oblique Arts
Museum of Cambridge
Using artefacts from the Museum of Cambridge’s collection, including the zoetrope, artists from Oblique Arts will project a showreel of images carefully cut together and mapped onto the building.

4. On the Wings of Freedom
Created by Gloria Ronchi and Claudio Benghi
Magdalene College, river bank facing Quayside
A kaleidoscope of glowing butterflies, encasing coloured and dynamic LEDs that come alive at night, creating an interactive and immersive experience for the audience.

5. Catch Me Now
Created by Tine Bech
Interactive light installation that entices audiences into a merry dance of catch. Dynamic. Vibrant. Playful. BDP Lighting will create an exciting facade installation that incorporates a blend of art, light and technology to transform the Guildhall and create a memorable public experience.

6. Vertex
Created by Ithaca
All Saints Gardens, Trinity St
Touch the railings and make the garden glow. Vertex by Ithaca is an innovative interactive installation drawing on the childhood desire to playfully engage with our surroundings in a tactile way.

7. Venn in Light
Created by Rob Mills
Gonville and Caius College, Trinity St
A tribute to the mathematical work by John Venn in his former college. This installation plays with colour and light to show off his classic diagram.

8. Play
Created by James Bawn
Great St Mary’s Church, Senate House Hill
Engage with the 15th century structural features of the building using a play of light. Members of the public can interact and take part in this illumination by taking control of several large lighting fixtures and creating their own patterns using modern game controllers based around the perimeter.

9. SPIRITUS – Light and Darkness
Created by Ross Ashton and Karen Monid
Senate House
The show is based on the work of Robert Grosseteste who was an English statesman, scholastic philosopher, theologian, scientist and Bishop of Lincoln, who wrote some of the wests earliest “scientific” works and was an original thinker.

10. Fleeting Image
Created by Susie Olczak and Ian Wolter
This is a mobile installation so check the website for more details.
Ian Wolter and Susie Olczak have collaborated to create an interactive optical device – a geometric camera obscura that can be used as the festival camera.

11. King’s College installation
King’s Parade
Check the website for details.

12. Stream of Light
Created by Colin Ball
The Guildhall
Dynamic. Vibrant. Playful. BDP Lighting will create an exciting facade installation that incorporates a blend of art, light and technology to transform the Guildhall and create a memorable public experience.

13. Liter of Light
Created by Mick Stephenson
Market Square, Peas Hill
This three-layered, majestic pyramid is both a light art installation and a conceptual piece. It beautifully represents the work of the Liter of Light charity, whilst challenging the observer to reflect on inequality and light poverty.

14. Eclipse
Created by Chris Wood
Aromi, Bene’t St
A large suspended dichroic disc transforms the colour of the light it encounters, painting wherever it lands in pools of changing colour. These colours continually change as the disc slowly rotates.

15. Upon Reflection
Created by Colin Dewar
Corn Exchange, Wheeler St
Things are not quite as they seem. The true reality is only revealed if a picture is taken using a flash.

16. Cosmic Radiophone
Created by Phil Arnold and Robin McGinley
Corn Exchange, Wheeler St
Cosmic Radiophone is an illuminated instrument offering visitors the opportunity to play the sound of the Big Bang.

17. Emissive Conveyance
Created by Abi Spendlove
Corn Exchange, Wheeler St
Infrared video captures the artist walking the route from the current headquarters of Cambridge Assessment, to their new HQ at the ‘Triangle’ site. The artist touches the surfaces of the street as she walks, running her hand along walls and railings in a childlike, playful movement.

18. (U.C.L.E.S)
Created by Eleanor Osmond
Corn Exchange, Wheeler St
Exploring the language and authority of exam papers, an industrial scrolling LED display (U.C.L.E.S) asks the viewer a constant stream of questions, taken from archival examination material from the Cambridge Assessment Group Archive.

19. On Screen
Created by Henry Driver
Corn Exchange, Wheeler St
Questioning the intense levels of spectatorship and CCTV surveillance present throughout everyday life, live interactive video of the audience is displayed throughout the space, responding to the audience’s movements and actions.

20. The Cambridge Whale
Created by Alice Turner
David Attenborough Building, Pembroke St
An anatomical reconstruction of the Museum of Zoology’s iconic Finback Whale specimen, depicting skeletal and soft tissues as well as fascinating facts about the specimen.

21. The View from Here
Created by Ian Wolter
A large, kinetic light-work and performance sculpture which is human ‘powered’. It creaks and whirrs as it turns and appears to have been made from found objects: parts of bicycles, boats and ladders etc. The sun, planets and moons are all illuminated beach balls.

22. Reading Lines
Created by Gino Malocca
University Library, West Road
A laser projection piece exploring the architecture of the iconic University Library tower. The animated laser lines will “snake” across the surface of the tower in a variety of colours. Animated laser lines will follow the key architectural features of the structure and “snake” across the surface in a variety of colours, red, blue, green, cyan, magenta, yellow.

23. First Light
Created by Simon Fisher and Malgosia Benham
The Marshall Building, Marshall Airport
One of the country’s original airport buildings, dating back to an era when air travel was glamorous. Lighting rays depict a dynamic lighting effect above the entrance and the three main windows above the main entrance are illuminated using red, white and blue lights, to symbolise the RAF roundel colours and to represent Marshall’s strong ties with the RAF throughout its history. The artwork title is inspired by the film that tells the story of an RAF pilot joining the Forces and flying a Spitfire plane.

24. The Bouygues UK Triangle Light
The Triangle, Cambridge Assessment, Shaftsbury Road
Built by Bouygues UK, The Triangle is Cambridge Assessment’s new HQ. Its iconic Tower will be illuminated during the six nights of Bouygues UK e-Luminate Cambridge for the very first time.

More details about the festival can be found at the website below.