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Post Date

08 August 2011

A major trans-European artistic collaboration will be launched at the Skyway Festival in Torun, Poland, this week, before being seen at the Valgusfestival Tallinn, (Estonia) in September, and at Lumiere in Durham (UK) in November. 

Three artists – one from each country - have each been commissioned to create a work of art for the three light festivals in a collaboration given the over-arching title Lux Scientia. The three artists – Simeon Nelson (UK), Dominik Lejman (Poland) and Leonardo Meigas (Estonia) will each collaborate with a scientist and all three works will explore both the scientific and aesthetic aspects of light.

Lux Scientia aims to act as a platform for debate about how the different artists’ vision relates to the their installation in different spaces and environments, and to raise awareness of a shared European heritage, foster mutual understanding and celebrate the cultural diversity of the three countries. Each festival will hold a round table discussion between resident artists and scientists culminating in a symposium in London curated by cultural programmer and designer Mario Caeiro.

LEONARDO MEIGAS’ work currently explores the scientific phenomenon of the Hartmann Grid. His piece will take the form of a multimedia installation of ‘invisible walls’ that appear when lit. The goal is to recognize the existence of natural radiations and their effect.

DOMINIK LEJMAN’s large-scale works aim to create a new kind of ‘urban’ light-painting – a technique involving video projections onto buildings, whose façades become highly charged historical canvases.

SIMEON NELSON is a sculptor who is concerned with the interaction between mankind and nature. Collaborating with scientists, philosophers and theologians, Nelson works to connect science with human understanding of the world.

The three artworks will be presented at all three festivals, each of which is independently curated and has a different theme and focus but all of which aim to present a series of installations, projections and performances created by artists using the medium of light.  All three festivals have built a strong critical following and attract mass audiences.  75,000 people visited the inaugural Lumiere Festival in 2009, and the oldest of the festivals, Valgusfestival (Tallinn), now attracts around 120,000 people. Each festival creates a context in which the nighttime economy of their city is enhanced by the large numbers of people who come out to attend events in the streets after dark. 

The social aspects of this animation of the city are easily proved, with reductions in crime and anti-social behaviour and an increase in night-time trading.

The partnership has been brokered by British event producers Artichoke, who produce the Lumiere Festival and are well known for mounting large-scale, site-specific events such as The Sultan’s Elephant and Antony Gormley’s One & Other.  The project has received funding from the European Commission’s Culture Programme, demonstrating the power of cultural events to attract inward investment and build local economies.

You can find out more about Lux Scientia and each of the festivals at www.luxscientia.com.

This project has been funded with support from the European Commission.