Amsterdam Light Festival is coming to town!

Dazzling Amsterdam light festival during the dark winter days

For centuries, light is one of the main sources of inspiration for artists. Besides the creation of the ‘divine light’ through the stained glass windows of medieval cathedrals, the dramatic chiaroscuro was the basis of the Renaissance art. Light provided us our own Master of Light, Rembrandt, in the Golden Age and from the 20th century on it has its own art movement (Dan Flavin, James Turrell and Olafur Elliasson I LOVE YOU!). On November 28, the same light settles for 51 days in our capital under the title Amsterdam Light Festival. Lucky me I’m one of the team members of the festival, so I already had a couple of sneak peeks this week…

Dearest Friend Amsterdam Light Festival

Dearest Friend… by Darya von Berner. This artwork represents a letter from the famous Dutch philosopher Baruch Spinoza to his best friend Lodewijk Meijer written in Latin. Picture ©Darya von Berner

Dropped into a winter depression like I did for many years? No worries, your winter blues will be set aside because the urban lights parade along the canals of Amsterdam is coming to rescue! The theme of this year’s (already 4th) edition is Friendship. You can choose between two routes, but I advise you to do both (of course)!

Bands_of_Friendship Amsterdam Light Festival

Bands of Friendship by the Indian Vikas Patil & Santosh Gujar brings you back to your childhood when many of us symbolized their endless friendship with their best friends with these wrist bands. Picture ©Marle Thomson

Tale of Two Cities Amsterdam Light Festival

A Tale of Two Cities by the Dutch design duo Vendel & de Wolf. The title is derived from the famous novel of Charles Dickens (1859) that’s full of symbols about decline and resurrection.

First, immerse yourself in the winter atmosphere during the Water Colors boat route (yes, you too citizens of Amsterdam… hop on that canal boat ;)). Second, stroll between December 10 and January 3 through the Plantage and Weesper neighborhood (Amsterdam East) to admire the latest light art innovations during the Illuminade walking route for free. Both outdoor exhibitions show works that have been made specially for Amsterdam Light Festival by national and international light art talents.

Run Beyond Amsterdam Light Festival

Run Beyond by the Italian Angelo Bonello is about taking a leap. Sometimes you just have to jump into the unknown to get where you want to be, because nothing is impossible.

Paths Crossing Amsterdam Light Festival

Paths Crossing by the Dutch Ralf Westerhof consists of various lines of light. Every line represent the life of a person and all together they form a story about friendship.

Talking Heads Amsterdam Light Festival

One on my favorite pieces: (one of the) Talking Heads by Viktor Viscek. It reminds me of the work of another awesome artist Levi van Veluw.

Next to this, the Amsterdam Light Festival offers a varied program of exhibitions, tours, symposiums, music and lectures on various locations throughout the city:

Freedom as a valuable friend Amsterdam Light Festival

A little bit of my beloved Big Apple in Amsterdam with Freedom as a Valuable Friend by Erik Sok, because the greatest friend you can ever have… Is freedom.

For more info and the complete festival agenda, routes and artworks go to the website of Amsterdam Light Festival.

P.s. And don’t forget to donate for my favorite project of the festival: FILOS commissioned by The Dutch Royal Dutch Guide Dog Foundation (KNGF Geleidehonden). Filos (Greek for friend) is an interactive sculpture and consists out of different lamps. With every donation a light will pop on and at the same time you’ll support the training of guide dogs for blind people! Donate via www.lightnight.nl. Thank you ♥