SGM Illuminates Lyon Festival of Lights

Four nights of utter enchantment was planned in December for Lyon’s most famous festival to date, broadcasting the heritage of the city. However, due to the recent tragic events in Paris, the Festival of Lights was cut short to a one-day tribute to the victims on December 8th, inviting people to stand united and light candles while the city became illuminated for that one evening at La Colline de Fourvière.

Rental company GL events Audiovisual was tasked as supplier of lighting, while also being an official partner of the light festival. “We were very surprised and honoured to be the only company selected for this year’s edition. Both the project and the site has worked wonders in our favour”, says project manager Frédéric Fuentes.

Palais de Justice lit up with SGM LED projectors during The Festival of Lights in Lyon, France. (All photos courtesy of  Vincent Criulanscy)

Together with lighting designer Daniel Knipper, the two men used solely SGM LED lighting equipment for the show. A mix of 40 x Q-7 combination flood/strobe/blinder and 12 x G-Profile LED framing moving heads, both fixtures being IP65-rated, thus worked in a beautiful interaction with PIGI video projectors.

Lighting designer Daniel Knipper explains: “We installed 10 PIGI video projectors for the Palais de Justice. I worked out the lighting concept for chevet de la Cathédrale St Jean, du Jardin de Rosaire and du chevet de la Basilique de Fourvière. These installations allow me to link light and images, controlling and dimming so the light interacts with the projected images. That is how I have been working with the two products from SGM; the Q-7 and the G-Profile.”

Palais de Justice displaying different lighting designs.

The Light Show ‘Regards’

Daniel Knipper’s light show called ‘Regards’ was the only piece to be maintained as all other activities were postponed to the upcoming 2016 edition. Frédéric Fuentes explains: “The lighting festival 2015 was shortened due to the very sad realities that occurred, and I was asked to change the former concept of four days into one day. Only Daniel Knipper’s artwork ‘Regards’ was maintained in its initial state, because it was perfectly corresponding to the contemplative perspective. We then chose to add the first names of the victims as projections at the end of the show.”

“The decision was made by Fête des Lumières [the Festival of Lights]. In the state of emergency, it was important to return to the original state of the Lyonese facing tough decisions in order to maintain public security and avoid huge crowds. ‘Regards’ is a contemplative large-scale project mixing huge images and illuminating the building of La Colline de Fourvière. A smooth dimming was realised to demonstrate all the emotions desired by the artist.”

Famous art works are projected onto Palais de Justice during the lighting festival last December in Lyon.

This was Daniel Knipper’s first time to work with the SGM fixtures. With previous observations of a P-5 installation in Dubai, he knew that SGM products would provide him with the reliability needed to adapt to the very tough requirements of architectural lighting.

“The idea was to work with a solid colour palette together with the raw materials of the building structures. The Q-7 was a very appropriate fixture thanks to the richness of its colours, allowing me to pick up any adequate colour with precision having the products do exactly what I ask of them. That combined with a great spread angle makes it possible to achieve a beautiful coverage of the area,” says Daniel Knipper. He continues to describing his choice of moving head. “I was looking for a moving shape due to the huge distance between the projectors and the surface of the buildings. For that the G-Profile was the perfect product; great output, gobo precision, a great variety of gobos – for me the ideal product for this installation. With the IP65-rating there is indeed no more need for domes. You don’t lose brightness due to plastic reflections. Thankfully!”

Cathédrale St Jeandu Jardin de Rosaire lighting projections.

Urban Heritage Illumination

Working on this heritage site proved challenging at times. The complexity of the building surfaces demanded additional attention in order to achieve uniform and powerful renderings. Also, the IP-rating was essential along with the zoom range. “The G-Profile completely matched these requirements,” concludes Frédéric Fuentes pleased with its powerful output and high quality of both framing and gobos.

Both the G-Profile and Q-7 were used not only for the beautiful buildings, but for the entire scenery including the vegetation, especially for Rosaire Gardens, off-centred and from a long distance.

The two lighting professionals were well-satisfied with the results achieve by deploying SGM LED luminaires. “The gain was much more effective compared to previous installations on these buildings,” sums up Frédéric Fuentes underlining the great team effort behind this tribute event. “Only team work will allow us to transform an artistic concept into a quality event in an urban environment; each person played an important role in the setup of this event for this very particular happening for this years’ edition.”

Lighting Designer  Daniel Knipper
Project Manager  Frédéric Fuentes
Technical Lighting Manager Alexandre Trapon
Technical Video Manager Patrick Matuszek
Site Responsible David Ferlay
Production Assistant Bénédicte Petit
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