Light Games: the First Russian Lights Festival “LumiFest” Coming to St. Petersburg

Can public lighting surprise and delight? After visiting urban lights festival “LumiFest” all St. Petersburg dwellers will give an affirmative answer. “LumiFest” will be held in Aleksandrovsky Park near subway station “Gorkovskaya” on October, 8-9. Natalya Bystryantseva, associate professor and head of “Creative Light Design School” of ITMO University, shared how light installations will illuminate the Park and elevations of surrounding buildings.

What inspired you to organize this festival?

We initiated a research-to-practice conference “Light Design 2014” last year. Back then we aimed to define a concept “light design” and learn what methods are used, what schools and experts are leaders of light design promotion. Then we understood that apart from theoretical skills we have to develop hands-on experience forming “market of ideas”. It was also necessary to demonstrate achievements of leading Russian light designers. Thus an open-air festival is the best way to do that. It is also a wonderful opportunity to rethink a public lightning problem. It is the first large light festival in Russia. We have never organized such events. That is why we looked up to European light festivals such as French festival “Fête des lumières.”  

What is light installation?

It is an original technical solution, which reveals some unusual aspects of common things assigning them a specific meaning. However the question is how this installation affects us. Personally I visited more than 15 festivals but I remember only 3 or 4 the most interesting installations.

How much space will be covered by exhibits?

The festival will cover the whole Aleksandrovsky Park. Building elevations, footpaths and trees will be lightened with more than 27 installations, the most of which will be interactive. Both children and adults will be interested in this festival. There is no need to go into details because a picture paints a thousand words.

When “LumiFest” will  be open to the public?

The installations will be lightened from 8 p.m. till 11 p.m. The program of the festival includes light performances, excursions and a variety of activities. Read more here.

How these installations will be used after the festival?

Most of them were developed by students of Chair of "Creative Light Design School" together with leading light designers and interactive project experts. We want these installations to be used as a part of St. Petersburg light culture. We are also going to launch this festival every year in order to attract as many people as it possible. We aim to show how much efforts have been put to develop these installations. Furthermore we organized a variety contests such as “Light: motivation or manipulation” and “Light&Movies” that aim to choose the best art installation and most interesting movie about light. Both pros and amateurs can take part in these competitions. The winners will be awarded with valuable prizes by creative association “RULD” and “IntiLED” company and will take part in the next Festival. “Lumifest” are going to fuse together Russian and international light designers who will also take part in “Light Design Conference 2015”.

Who will take part in this conference?

Leading experts from Milan, Rome, London and other European cities will participate in the conference. A famous light designer Roger Narboni who created light projects for more than 90 cities will be a headliner. Mr. Narboni will also become the main supervisor of “Creative Light Design School” of ITMO University. Among the main speakers of the conference there will be Yulian Ayzenberg, leading Russian lighting engineer,  Valery Nefedov, Professor and Doctor of Architecture, Elina Lobatskeya, ex-editor of “LIGHTDESIGN ” journal and others.

To take part in the conference submit an application. All comers can also send us a paper on the topic of the conference till September, 16. After the conference we are going to publish a collection of scientific articles presented by participants.

Ulyana Malysheva

News portal editorial office

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