THE LIGHT WONDER OF LUCERNE
Competition for the Dramatic Staging of Lucerne’s Kapellbrücke and Wasserturm
Client: IG Inszenierung Kapellbrücke/Wasserturm
Location: Lucerne, Switzerland
For the staging of a dramatic light show Lucerne’s landmark Kapellbrücke (literally ‘Chapel Bridge’), in cooperation with iart interactive and Hansjürg Buchmeier, Nau2 proposed a culturally anchored lighting concept that can be modulated for different requirements and moods. Several themes, such as existing publications on the etymological derivation of the name “Lucerne”, the miraculous founding history of the city, and our understanding of the bridge as a repository of memories, were examined to provide a conceptual basis for the project. Further central motifs included the immediate natural surroundings of the bridge and tower ensemble as a living environment and tourist attraction in the sense of the “essence of Switzerland: the city, the lake, the mountains”.
Late in the evening, when the flow of people has slowed and the sun’s rays have descended, stronger forces contribute to “charging” the spectacle. The crests of the surrounding mountains and the tops of nearby towers flicker briefly and repeatedly, like a storm in the distance. Emanating from these peaks, beams of light repeatedly strike the bridge’s water tower; with its spire flashing and sparking, its batteries are all at once full. Light penetrates to the outside, first as a diffuse glow that surrounds the tower. Then, the light flows down the water tower, spreads out along the bridge in both directions, and lands in the water to spread like a swarm. At the end of the illumination, the swarm settles down; the light sinks towards the riverbed, diffuses below the water, and leaves behind a contemplative atmosphere.
– Prof. Hansjürg Buchmeier, Lucerne
– iart interactive, Basel