53 days, 36 artworks, and 13 nationalities
On 21 January, Amsterdam Light Festival concluded its 6th edition by turning off the lights of the artworks that highlighted the historical center for 53 days. The 36 artworks by artists from all over world lit up Amsterdam during the annual festival. The artists were challenged to base their work on this year’s theme ‘Existential’. Highlight of this year’s edition was the artwork thinline (a 6.5 kilometre-long light line, encompassing the entire water exhibition) designed exclusively for the festival by Chinese artist and activist Ai Weiwei. The land exhibition took place for the first time on Marineterrein Amsterdam. Also for the first time, the festival crossed the river IJ for the World Masters of Projection Mapping. Until 9 February, video projections will be showcased each day on the façade of EYE Filmmuseum.
“We have a very good feeling about the sixth edition of Amsterdam Light Festival. I am delighted that we succeeded in our ambition to take the festival to a higher artistic level. The careful consideration of the artworks, the land exhibition on Marineterrein, and the still ongoing ‘World Masters of Projection Mapping’ all contribute to the realization of this ambition”, Lennart Booij, artistic director.
The festival has become increasingly anchored in the city and stimulates collaboration with the citizens of Amsterdam. A good example is the collaboration between the German artist Claudia Reh and 38 elementary schools in Amsterdam. The children of several classes contributed to Reh’s light projection on the side of the Hermitage, creating a visual dialogue between the artist and the children. The new collaboration with event organizer ISE, RAI Amsterdam and EYE Filmmuseum resulted in crossing the IJ for the World Masters of Projection Mapping. Marineterrein Amsterdam – a new area for the festival’s land exhibition – offered the museum-like environment for fifteen interactive light artworks.
The upcoming edition of the festival revolves around creative interpretations of the main theme ‘The Medium is the Message’. The festival received more than 600 submissions from artists from all around the world. In the coming weeks, the curators and international jury of the festival will review these entries. The call for concepts for the seventh edition has been closed.
Every year innovative and qualitative light artworks by (inter)national artists light the city during Amsterdam Light Festival. The seventh edition takes place from 29 November 2018 until 20 January 2019. Once again, Amsterdam’s world-renowned canals, historic sites, and various waterfronts offer visitors a unique way to experience light artworks. The participating artists were asked for creative interpretations of the theme ‘The Medium is the Message’. www.amsterdamlightfestival.com/en.