Light festival illuminates the British capital

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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
Light Festival Illuminates the British Capital