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Visiting → Lux Helsinki Light Festival

8. 1. 2024 → Signal Spotlight

Lux Helsinki is one of Europe’s leading light festivals, which takes place every year at the beginning of January and this year was the fifteenth edition. Despite record-low temperatures, it is very well attended. The central part of Helsinki featured more than ten light installations, including a videomapping of the majestic Evangelical Cathedral, typical for its white façade. The festival also includes site-specific projects within residential areas on the outskirts of the city and also has its gallery section. A representative of the Signal Festival participated in a theoretical symposium and curatorial residency program organized by the local organization Finish Light Art Society, or FLASH.

The traditional and most visited square is in front of the Evangelical Cathedral near the harbor. The large Senate Square and the high church building are ideal for videomapping projections. The organizers have also lit up the adjacent surrounding buildings in the same way. The overall dramaturgy included three works by Weltraumgrafik studio (they created the videomapping for Signal Festival 2021), Janne Ahola, and Katariina Souri.

In his works, the Italian artist c999 often presents visible proclamatory slogans that are a commentary and reflection on journalism and the simplifications brought about by the media sphere. In his latest installation, Spectrum, which is based on the interweaving of video sequences and static graphics, the faces of people stand out as a complete machine imagination and the result of entering the same requirements in the form of text into an image generator. The majestic projection, supported by an impressive musical background, drew the attention of the audience to the façade of the Musiikkitalo Music Theatre.

One excellent example of working with the community is the “Cultural Centres” program series. This is the involvement of local cultural centers. These are buildings that often include a library, a small gallery, and other public services. Several artworks have been presented at four of these venues in the northern districts of Helsinki. Smaller, but no less elaborate video projections by artist Niko Tianen or a simple stage trick of oscillating water levels by Teo Lanerva at a local cinema. This format adds an extra layer to the festival. It serves to involve the outskirts of the city in the festival program, contributing to a better awareness of more than just light art.

A visit to the next edition can only be recommended, as it is a special event in a truly wintry environment. In addition, there is a lively exchange of installations between our festivals and you have the chance to see some installations or artists that you have already seen in Prague.

Radu Ignat (RO) – Facelessmen
Janne Ahola (FI) – Symmetria
Viktor Vicsek / Limelight (HU) – Talking Heads
Antti Puumalainen (FI) – Saimaa Theme
Marimekko & Ateneum – Unikko at La Louvière