8 things to see at London light festival Lumiere

London’s festival of light is back for a second year. Highlights include a field of flower-like sculptures in King’s Cross and a triangular tunnel of light on the South Bank

The Light of the Spirit Chapter 2 by Patrice Warrener, Westminster Abbey, Westminster. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London.

London can be a gloomy place in January but light festival Lumiere has brought a little joy to the capital with more than 50 outdoor installations. Illuminated artworks can be found across the West End, King’s Cross, Mayfair, Fitzrovia, the South Bank and Waterloo from now until Sunday. Here’s a look at some of this year’s landmark installations – including a watery veil of light in King’s Cross and a mesmerising interactive orb suspended above Oxford Circus…

Miguel Chevalier & Cyrille Henry – Origin of the World Bubble 2018

Oxford Circus

Origin of the World Bubble 2018 by Miguel Chevalier. Image: oxfordstreet.co.uk

French artist Miguel Chevalier’s installation takes the form of a giant orb suspended over Oxford Circus tube station. The piece caused mild panic after it broke free in a gust of wind earlier this month but is now firmly back in place. The interactive installation responds to the movement of people underneath with a changing series of visual displays – Chevalier describes it as  “a technological baroque of ever-changing universes”.

Vertigo – The Wave

Riverside Walkway, South Bank

The Wave by Vertigo, Riverside Walkway, South Bank. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London
The Wave by Vertigo, Riverside Walkway, South Bank. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London

Danish collective Vertigo’s installation is a triangular tunnel of light made up of illuminated ‘sound gates’. The piece is over 80 metres long and emits light and sound in response to movement.

Rami Bebawi / KANVA – Entre les Rangs

King’s Cross

Entre Les Rangs by Rami Bebawi / KANVA, Lewis Cubitt, Kings Cross. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London.
Entre Les Rangs by Rami Bebawi / KANVA, Lewis Cubitt, Kings Cross. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London. Images © Matthew Andrews

Visitors to King’s Cross can wander through a field of illuminated, flower-shaped objects created by Rami Bebawi and architecture practice KANVA. The piece is described as “a tribute to the fields of wheat that shimmer in the wind as seasons pass”.

Collectif Coin – Child Hood

Trafalgar Square

Image: collectif-coin.com

See luminous white balloons sway in mid air at Trafalgar Square. The piece was created by French collective Coin and lights casts a pretty mesmerising effect on the water surrounding the square’s fountain.

Katarzyna Malejka & Joachim Sługocki – Spectral

St James’s Square

Spectral on display in Lumiere Durham. Image: @lumieredurham. The piece is on display in London from January 18 to 21

Colourful threads of cord resemble beams of light in Katarzyna Malejka & Joachim Sługocki’s installation. Cords are wrapped around trees and street furniture and illuminated at night.

Waterlicht – Daan Roosegaarde

Granary Square

Daan Roosegaarde’s Waterlichte is designed to evoke the feeling of being underwater. A layer of blue light floats above people’s heads in Granary Square in a piece inspired by our changing relationship with water and the threat of rising sea levels. Viewers can trigger an accompanying soundtrack on their phones for the full audiovisual experience

Patrice Warrener – The Light of the Spirit

Westminster Abbey

The Light of the Spirit Chapter 2 by Patrice Warrener, Westminster Abbey, Westminster. Preview of Lumiere London, 18 – 21 January, produced by Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London.

French digital artist Patrice Warrener has transformed the facade of Westminster Abbey with a colourful projection that highlights the building’s impressive architecture. Figures and columns are lit up in vivid reds and blues

Max Cooper & Architecture Social Club – Aether

A mass of hanging lights move in response to original music by DJ and artist Max Cooper in Architecture Social Club’s mesmerising Aether installation. See it at the West Handyside Canopy.

Lumiere takes place from January 18 to 21 (lights are turned on from 5.30 to 10.30pm). It is produced by arts charity Artichoke and commissioned by the Mayor of London. See lumiere-festival.com for more information about the event.