Light festival illuminates the British capital

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London Lumiere Light Festival
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Light festival illuminates the British capital
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 15: The Garden of Light installation in Leicester Square, London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 15: The Garden of Light installation in Leicester Square, London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 15: 'Aquarium' by Benedetto Bufalino & Benoit Deseille, a telephone box turned into an aquarium Grosvenor Square in London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 15: A building decorated with light installations in Regent Street, London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 14: A giant illuminated net sculpture entitled '1.8 London' hangs above Oxford Circus in London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM - JANUARY 15: A giant illuminated net sculpture entitled '1.8 London' hangs above Oxford Circus in London, England as part of the first London Lumiere festival on January 15, 2015. Lumiere London is a free light festival in 30 locations with various light installations across some of the capital's most iconic areas. (Photo by Tolga Akmen/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images)
IFO by French artist Jacques Rival is on show as part of the lumiere light festival in London on January 14, 2016. London hosts a festival that brings together international light artists to create installations across the capital. AFP PHOTO/JUSTIN TALLIS RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE, MANDATORY MENTION OF THE ARTIST UPON PUBLICATION, TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION / AFP / JUSTIN TALLIS (Photo credit should read JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images)
IFO by French artist Jacques Rival is on show as part of the lumiere light festival in London on January 14, 2016. London hosts a festival that brings together international light artists to create installations across the capital. AFP PHOTO/JUSTIN TALLIS RESTRICTED TO EDITORIAL USE, MANDATORY MENTION OF THE ARTIST UPON PUBLICATION, TO ILLUSTRATE THE EVENT AS SPECIFIED IN THE CAPTION / AFP / JUSTIN TALLIS (Photo credit should read JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP/Getty Images)
LONDON, ENGLAND - JANUARY 13: The Light of the Spirit by artist Patrice Warrener is exhibited at Westminster Abbey during the Lumiere London exhibition on January 13, 2016 in London, England. The first Lumiere exhibition in London is a free festival of light with exhibits placed in 30 locations across the capital. The event will run from January 14 to January 17. (Photo by Ben Pruchnie/Getty Images)
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London visitors were able to see their favorite landmarks transformed by light at the first ever Lumiere London festival, which opened on Thursday.

From dazzling light installations suspended above Oxford Street, to a vibrant circus display at Kings Cross, an array of light installations created by UK and international artists were on display, spanning 30 locations across the capital.

Other locations included Westminster Abbey and the BAFTA building in Piccadilly. Helen Marriage, curator of Lumiere London, acknowledged that all the artists involved used varying multimedia elements to turn the capital into a 'huge outdoor gallery'. She said that artists involved worked with different technologies to create the impressive installations, including freestanding neons and fibre optics.

Highlights include 'The Light of the Spirit', a spectacular illumination of Westminster Abbey's West Gate by French digital artist Patrice Warrener, who used a chromalithe technique to 'paint' Westminster Abbey's West Gate in neon technicolor, swathing statues of Dr Martin Luther King and El Salvadoran Bishop Oscar Romero in electrifying color. American artist Janet Echelman crafted an interactive light display, with her floating ever-changing light sculpture '1.8 London' suspended above Oxford Street.

Echelman explained that she created her work with the intention of it being interactive through visitors using their mobile phones to project the 'heat' of their touch onto the surface of the light sculpture. Organized by the Artichoke Trust, the event is set to rival light festivals in Lyon, Berlin and Sydney. Lumiere London runs until January 17.
Light Festival Illuminates the British Capital
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