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Mayor​ ​welcomes​ ​first​ ​reveal​ ​of​ ​programme​ ​highlights​ ​for Lumiere​ ​London

October 11, 2017 Destination Europe No Comments Email Email

The Mayor of London Sadiq Khan and arts charity Artichoke, the leading UK producer of art in the public realm, have provided a sneak preview of some of the artists and installations for Lumiere London 2018, the capital’s largest arts festival, which returns to London from 18th – 21st January 2018. 

Westminster Abbey and the National Theatre are amongst the first landmark locations to be revealed. New artworks are announced in the key festival areas of London’s West End, King’s Cross, South Bank and Waterloo. For the first time, the festival will also work in outer London boroughs to engage communities in the creation of new artworks, making this extraordinary cultural event one that will benefit all Londoners.   

Commissioned by the Mayor of London and produced by Artichoke, Lumiere London is a free–to-attend event, with major support from London & Partners, King’s Cross and the West End. Additional support will be provided by a host of partners and funders including Bloomberg Philanthropies, Wellcome, The Fitzrovia Partnership and South Bank and Waterloo BIDs.

Building on the phenomenal success of Lumiere London 2016, which was attended by 1.3 million people over four nights, the ground-breaking festival returns with a bigger footprint stretching across both sides of the River Thames. Festival destinations will include King’s Cross and London’s West End (including Carnaby, Leicester Square, Mayfair, Oxford Circus, Piccadilly, Piccadilly Circus, Regent Street, Seven Dials, St James’s and St James’s Market), with Covent Garden, Fitzrovia, Victoria, South Bank and Waterloo added as new destinations for 2018.

More than 40 UK and international artists will transform the city into a vast nocturnal outdoor exhibition space, offering audiences new and surprising perspectives on the capital’s districts, streets and iconic architecture. The festival, which is designed to lift the spirits in the dark days of winter, will welcome millions to the capital and reinforce London’s position as the leading global cultural capital, open to all.

The first five artists and works revealed today provide a taster of the 2018 Lumiere LondonProgramme:

  • The Light of the Spirit by Patrice Warrener (France) at Westminster Abbey: French digital artist Patrice Warrener returns to present the second instalment of The Light of the Spirit for Westminster Abbey, one of the most popular installations at Lumiere London in 2016. Building upon this 2016 commission to articulate elements on the West Front, which gave the impression of a painted facade, for 2018 Warrener will incorporate more of this landmark building, illuminating the sculptural details in his distinctive polychromatic style.
  • Aether by Architecture Social Club (UK) at the West Handyside Canopy, King’s Cross: The British collective of designers, architects, technicians and poets, Architecture Social Club, will present an emotive and powerful audio-visual work for  the festival entitled Aether. Its glittering mass grows, rolls and splinters in reaction to the soundscape created by music producer, Max Cooper. Connecting light and sound to the emotions of viewers and playing on our intrinsic and emotional relationship with form, colour and sound, Aether accentuates our connections with the physical, engulfing the viewer in a rich, sensory experience.
  • OSC-L by Ulf Langheinrich (Germany) at The National Theatre: Digital artist, Ulf Langheinrich will present OSC-L for Lumiere London 2018. The projected work will transform the National Theatre fly tower into a glowing monument that will stand out as a transcendent beacon along South Bank’s skyline. Designed to react with the brutalist design of Denys Lasdun’s building, OSC-L will both animate and liquify the appearance of the hard concrete shape of the National Theatre.
  • Bough 3 by Simon Corder (UK), 17-22 South Audley Street, Mayfair: Bough 3 is a new commission for Lumiere London by British artist and lighting designer, Simon Corder. Vivid tubes of fluorescent light will grow up the façade of this significant Mayfair building, climbing like ivy up the wall, over and around the ornate decorations in the brickwork, bathing the surrounding site in a soft blue light. Bough 3 will be the third in a series of Bough projects by Corder, previously installed in  Glasgow and at Oxo Tower Wharf.
  • NIGHTLIFE by the Lantern Company (UK) in Leicester Square Gardens: Lead artist Jo Pocock and the Lantern Company will transform Leicester Square Gardens into an evocative illuminated world, bringing a sense of the wild into the heart of the city. Populated by a host of curious nocturnal creatures in a luminous secret garden, the installation plays with the tension between wild spaces and urban city life. A world away from the hustle and bustle of the capital, this busy, central area will become a space for quiet reflection and a gathering place to celebrate the beautiful and wild.

Helen Marriage, Artichoke CEO and Lumiere London Artistic Director, said: “The first Lumiere London saw more than a million people come out onto the streets of the city on some of the coldest nights of the year. Ever since, people have been asking us when it will return. These five installations are just a tiny taster of what’s planned for Lumiere London 2018.

“Once again, Artichoke is working with an exceptionally talented team of UK and international artists whose site-specific installations will transform the capital’s buildings, streets and public spaces into a vast gallery without walls. Lumiere London is about more than the art: it’s about people sharing public space and re-discovering the city.

“Producing a festival at this scale demands an extraordinary collaboration between partners across the capital, working together to create something bigger than the sum of its parts. Sponsorship opportunities that place business and brands squarely in front of our vast, happy audiences are still available. Why not join our family of partners who are committed to supporting this first major London event of 2018 following the festive season?”

The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, said: “I’m delighted to give Londoners a sneak peek into what Lumiere London 2018 has in store. The spectacle, which will be the capital’s largest arts festival, will transform iconic locations like Westminster Abbey and the National Theatre. For the first time ever, we are also bringing the festival to boroughs around the capital so it can reach Londoners wherever they live in the city.

“We have promised to make Lumiere London bigger, bolder and better and today’s preview gives a taste of Artichoke’s amazing plans. With international artists showcasing a dazzling array of installations across the city at what is usually a quiet time of year – we are showing that London is open to creativity, business and ideas from across the globe.”

Andrew Cooke, Acting CEO of London and Partners, said: “London’s cultural calendar  runs all year, and Lumiere London helps draw in many extra international and domestic visitors who come to see the city, its buildings and its diverse neighbourhoods in a new light. Londoners and visitors alike will be excited to see Westminster Abbey and the National Theatre starring as two of the bright reimaginings of the capital during the festival.”

Nic Durston, CEO of the South Bank BID, said: “We are delighted that South Bank will be participating in Lumiere 2018. As the cultural heart of London, South Bank is synonymous with art and creativity. It’s home to some of the world’s most important arts and cultural organisations, internationally famous visitor attractions, and has a diverse range of leading hotels, restaurants and bars. South Bank is a neighbourhood that appeals to all Londoners, and to tourists and visitors from all over the globe. All will be equally welcome for Lumiere in January 2018.”

Councillor Nickie Aiken, Leader of Westminster City Council and Chair of the West End Partnership said: “Culture, art and entertainment are synonymous with London’s West End. Following the huge success of the 2016 festival which welcomed millions of visitors from across London and the world, we are delighted to once again have the opportunity to present our iconic landmarks and globally renowned streets in a new light. Major moments like this really put London in the spotlight and should help to bring more people to this unique cultural and theatrical global destination where there is an unrivalled choice of world class leisure, retail and entertainment experiences.”

Anna Strongman, Partner, Argent (King’s Cross), said: Lumiere London is another fabulous reason to come to King’s Cross and explore its squares and parks. We will be hosting a diverse range of light works, as well as putting on our own attractions for visitors.”

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