Wednesday 18 November 2015

Lumiere in Durham

Originally planned as a one-off, Lumiere has grown into the UK's largest light festival. We saw only a fraction of it, but what we did see was spectacular. The city was very dark, all the better to see the light shows, but this meant that a lot of the photographs I took did not come out well at all.
The World Machine:


The story of the birth of modern cosmology from the 12th century until the present was told on the fa├žade of Durham Cathedral.

It was son et lumiere, and the sound was very impressive too
The Big Bang, black holes, medieval cosmology, dark holes, the formation of galaxies,  all figured in the light projections on the cathedral

Some of the projections were necessarily too dark, and even though I snapped, the photographs did not come out well

so I am not able to show each section as it unfolded

but here are some of the brighter photographs to show how spectacular it all was

Garden of Light:

The French team behind this installation created 'giant illuminated plants to bring tropical summer to wintry November'

at the College, behind the Cathedral

it was a pleasure walking around



There were more of these plants along South Bailey

and the Prebends Bridge

The darkness of the city streets enhanced the experience

We moved down to the river and got a different view of the illuminated cathedral.

Les Lumineoles:

Lit by LEDs the brightly lit imaginary birds twisted and turned against the wind in Market Place


Japanese artist Fujiko Nakaya was the first artist to use fog as a sculptural medium, using it for transmission of light and shadow. We saw this as we stood on Framwelgate bridge

Fool's Paradise:

From Framwelgate bridge we also had the opportunity to see Fool's Paradise projected on Durham castle.

Tales of local history, folklore and famous fables were projected, using elements of stopmotion animation, paper cutting and hand drawn images.


The Pied Piper in this image.

Asalto Durham:

Durham residents appearing to be climbing the viaduct, eventually reaching the top. Artist Daniel Canogar says that his installation is 'a large-scale projection that helps us imagine overcoming the obstacles in our lives'.

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