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Winter Lights at Canary Wharf

The Winter Lights festival is the largest of its kind in London, it transforms Canary Wharf every year with stunning light installations, during dreary January. I took my son there for its closing night.

The free event showcases light art and interactive installations by some of the most innovative light artists across the globe with some new commissions alongside pieces never before seen in the UK.

Canary Wharf was transformed by over 20 light installations, alongside a pop-up food markets serving delicious street food and hot drinks along the way. The installations are open 5-10pm daily in January, bit be warned, it gets very busy. We didn't manage to see all of them this time as it was very crowded.

These are some of the lights that we managed to see:

ANIMA, WATER STREET In a world in constant competition, the more information is gathered about people, the more power can be wielded over them. Fast as light, our data travels around the world. It no longer belongs to us, funnelling into a system of stored information. The lights we interact with in Anima become symbols of collective information, reminding us that we belong to a system in which, like the lights from thousands of optical fibres, we are all equal but indistinguishable, our data transcends our personal experiences and is disconnected from us, merging with a global digital conscience.

EMERGENCE THIS IS LOOP UK MONTGOMERY SQUARE Making its debut at Canary Wharf, Emergence is a large-scale sculpture, standing at 3m high and 10m in diameter and shaped like a cylindrical monolith punctuated with entrances to give access to a roofless interior space. The sculpture is made up of mirrored, tunnel trapezoidal prisms stacked together, like bricks in a wall, to create a hyper-textualised surface with lighting laced throughout. Walk inside and fully immerse yourself in this spectacular installation.

FLUORESCENT FIRS JUBILEE PARK These stunning Fluorescent Fir trees transform our tranquil park into a magically, multicoloured forest. Watch them as they gently glow and change colour, lighting up the surrounding plants and trees.

FLOATING EARTH LUKE JERRAM UK MIDDLE DOCK Jerram’s spectacular Floating Earth installation aims to evoke similar emotions in the viewer to that of an astronaut viewing Earth from space. Coined the ‘Overview Effect’ by Frank White in 1987, common features of this experience include a feeling of awe for the planet, a profound understanding of the interconnection of all life, and a renewed sense of responsibility for taking care of the environment. Floating Earth also prompts the difficult discussions we all need to have about what we, as individuals and as a wider society, must do to avoid runaway climate change.

Floating Earth Luke Jerram Canary Wharf

You can keep up to date with other Canary Wharf events here.


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