From 18 to 23 March the ninth Luminale will be underway in an entirely new format. Taking place concurrently with the international Light + Building trade fair, this popular public event in Frankfurt and Offenbach will take the presence of experts and artists from Germany and abroad as an opportunity for an interdisciplinary discourse about the city and its future, incorporating social, ecological, technological and artistic aspects.
140 projects are on the programme, in the five festival categories of ART, COMMUNITY, STUDY, SOLUTIONS and BETTER CITY. The category of ART alone, in which a seven-member board of experts is supporting the programme team, brings together 30 outstanding projects of lighting art and artistic work poised excitingly between lighting and the city. Moreover, Luminale will also provide major incentives for a modern and sustainable urban design. All will take place under the aegis of the Mayor of the City of Frankfurt am Main, Peter Feldmann, who has no doubt: “The optimised concept has given the festival a new quality. Luminale 2018 will permanently link artistic displays, technological development and meaningful social objectives, raising the profile of our city as a pioneer of modern urban development.”
Five of Frankfurt’s greatest architectural attractions – the Römer, the Alte Oper, the European Central Bank, St. Catherine’s Church and the Eiserner Steg – will be venues for an artistic display of light in the city in multifarious forms. Philipp Geist will be making the Römer into a lighting installation you can walk around, and the Italian artists’ collective Karmachina will be displaying the history of the Alte Oper, playing to Luminale for the first time, in a videomapping show. Urbanscreen, an artists’ collective from Bremen, with illustrator Andreas Preis, will be turning the facade of the European Central Bank into an animated street-art gallery.
In St. Catherine’s Church Viennese artist Victoria Coeln will be creating a polychromatic lighting space with analogue means. Fabian Thiele will be taking the start to construction of the Eiserner Steg a hundred and fifty years ago as an opportunity for a typographical installation with a poem by the Frankfurt dialect poet Friedrich Stoltze.
Among this year’s new features will be a Light Walk, bringing together 35 artistic works from all categories, to form an inner-city gallery and linking both landmarks and monuments with undiscovered and out-of-the-way locations. Those who are interested can enjoy the Light Walk in numerous guided tours. These compact walks will combine the history of the city with exciting lighting art. In this way, even long-time Frankfurt residents will get a completely new view of their city. Guests from Germany and abroad will be able to discover Frankfurt away from the usual travelogue recommendations.
Reflecting the new concept of Luminale as a “Biennale for lighting art and urban design”, many of the works submitted are on urban-design themes.
The URBAN CLIMATE CANOPY has been developed in collaboration with Master’s degree students of Munich Technical University at the interface of teaching and research and will enthuse public space as an installation, canopy or urban furniture, creating space and modulating climate. In his “Light on” project Jens Schader will be utilising the very widest variety of luminescent elements to cast light on nine “dark places”, seen as unsafe, in the middle of the high-rise development on the Ben-Gurion-Ring, known earlier as a problem district.
COMMUNITY: Open to all – citizens in dialogue
The category of COMMUNITY will bundle the many-facetted Luminale programme of the Frankfurt and Offenbach City Association, leaving room for innovations, experiments and improvisations. Museums, studios, scene venues, urban initiatives, religious communities and clubs will be organising exhibitions, events and artistic projects. “These deep roots which Luminale has put down in the society of the city are something really unique”, says the head of Luminale, Isa Rekkab. This is shown not only by the 82 projects in this segment of Luminale – making it the broadest of them all.
In ATELIERFRANKFURT alone some 1,000 square metres will be devoted to nine installations, performances, light sculptures and video works. The studio and exhibition building is home to around 130 studios, offering flexible open space for artistic projects, events and (thought) experiments.
Project “Popcorn”, from the Meso designer collective, is an interactive facade projection with plenty of fun: the biggest popcorn machine in the world! Visitors clap their hands and, by doing so, produce popcorn. The more they clap, the more popcorn is “produced” on the facade. Many people will make the machine boil over.
SOLUTIONS: incentives for urban design
The SOLUTIONS programme at the Luminale Festival Centre in the Instituto Cervantes will be all about the city and its future. Focal points of the five theme evenings will be environment, architecture, security, people and light. The range will run from the global to the local, from scientific theory to the practice of everyday life, from the past to the future. Internationally recognised scientists, visionaries, artists and directors will launch an exciting dialogue on each subject with people closely involved in the City of Frankfurt. Among the prominent international speakers expected at the City Light Symposium, in collaboration with the Frankfurt University of Applied Sciences, are Mark Major (Speirs+Major), Charles Stone (Fisher Marantz Stone) and Roger Narboni (Concepto). The programme for the opening evening features a German premiere. During the cinema series MOVIE ART N EAT the Frankfurt House of Culture will be presenting a documentation entitled “NEON – FEEL THE GLOW”, a declaration of love to those slim, matt incandescent tubes. The category of SOLUTION is primarily supported by the Frankfurt am Main Polytechnic Society Foundation (Stiftung Polytechnische Gesellschaft Frankfurt am Main).
You will find photographs for some Luminale projects for download here:
You will find information about all projects here:
Background information on Luminale
With around 200,000 visitors, Luminale ranks among the biggest events in Frankfurt and the Rhine-Main region. The festival of light is held concurrently with the international Light + Building trade fair every two years. Messe Frankfurt founded Luminale in 2002 and has promoted and supported the festival extensively since then. Next year, from 18 to 23 March, Luminale will have a new concept. Frankfurt and Offenbach will not only be the settings for lighting art but also the focus of the festival. Luminale is being positioned as the BIENNALE FOR LIGHTING ART AND URBAN DESIGN with the aim of generating impulses for cities as attractive, future-oriented locations and creative hubs at the interface of art, technology and urbanity.
- Press release: Frankfurt in lights! (pdf, 50 KB)