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Throwing ‘light’ on light

The year 2015 is the International Year of Light and Light-based Technologies, 2015. Story of Light Festival which will be held from January 14 to January 18 in Panaji is an attempt to understand the importance of light in our everyday life. This five-day event will witness confluence of 45 artists from 12 countries, where they will speak about light through various installations

It is a rare event when artists, scientists, educationalists and philosophers come together and create various art installations that emit light, literally. Story of Light is a festival where people from Panaji and Goa will get an opportunity to learn and understand various stories related to light and how it directly or indirectly influences our lives. It is claimed to be India’s first science-meets-art festival that will be held in Panaji from January 14 to January 18, in partnership with the Corporation of the City of Panaji.

Speaking at a press briefing, festival co-director Jaya Ramchandani on January 10 said that through this festival one will learn about science, culture and philosophy in a most interesting fashion.

For this Festival 45 artists and scientists from around the world right from Brazil to Japan have come down and are putting up installations in public spaces keeping in mind the local context. The festival line-up includes a diverse mix of artists who will explore the numerous facets of light through installations, performances and workshops. It will be held in the heart of Panaji, that includes river-front Promenade, Old GMC building, Church Square, Miramar beach and Goa Science Centre.

CCP Commissioner Sanjit Rodrigues during the press briefing stated that now Panaji is emerging as the knowledge capital as such events are providing food for thought and most importantly also providing solutions to city’s problem areas. “Through these festivals citizens will explore the city and its open spaces. Also this festival is using lot of technology, solar energy, LED lighting system, and also an installation which is using hydroponics, to clean the water of St Inez Creek. These technologies could be used by Panaji city to solve its problems”, said Sanjit. When asked on how CCP is tackling the issues related to traffic and garbage which is generated through such public festivals in the city, and in turn putting pressure on the city, he said, “For this kind of festival this pressure is a small price to pay. It is better than clogging city on weekends without such events. Also ours is a knowledge-based event. At the same time we need co-operation from public to work it smoothly.”

 

About some interesting installations

 

Lighting the Way

By Divya Karnad & Waylon D’Souza

The perfect painting of the olive ridley sea turtle’s life would be set against the backdrop of a dark, uninhabited beach. Light, in a sea turtle’s life, brings both direction and chaos. Beach front lighting helps night owls party, but for baby sea turtles, it is the kiss of death. Artificial lighting on beaches attracts freshly hatched sea turtle hatchlings towards them, causing them to head in the opposite direction away from the sea, leading them to their death. Lighting the Way is an interactive public installation meant to bring attention to the issue of sea turtle hatchling disorientation. Constructed in the form of a maze, the installation is meant to confuse and disorient visitors as they enter and navigate through it, through the use of mirrors, glass and light sources kept throughout the maze. It will be held at Miramar beach.

 

ArchiBio

By Andrej Boleslavsky & Maria Judova

ArchiBio is projection mapping that unfolds the beauty of microscopic worlds enlarged to a giant size in the public space, outside Old GMC Building from 6 p.m. onwards.

 

Starstomp

By Gene Kogan & Alec Schachner

Starstomp is an immersive interactive audiovisual environment that takes you into the stars. The audience is invited into a space where their every movement generates light and sound, creating a dreamscape of our cosmos. It will be outside Old GMC Building.

 

Floating

Sunflower Garden

By Zuri Camille De Souza & Kaspar Flueck

Floating Flower Garden is a plant-based system to purify the heavily polluted water of St Inez Creek in Panaji. It is next to Vivanta by Taj off the main promenade. The artists are creating a set of 30 floating garden-modules built out of locally-sourced materials. The installation explores how plants harness the sun’s energy in the most fascinating and innovative ways, in this case, to clean water!

 

Elementals

By Elemental Poets

Elemental is a unique exploration of science, mind and the infinite universe showcased under the spectacular dome theatre of the planetarium. Poets, musicians, sound and video artists – and world-renowned science writer John Gribbin – have collaborated to present the world of the most literary, dazzling and passionate stars. It will tell four stories which speaks about the birth of the universe: The Big Bang, The Theory of Everything, Dark Matter and M Theory. It will be held at Planetarium of Goa Science Centre and on January 17 at Miramar beach.

 

Antariksha Sanchar

A collaboration between Bharatnatyam artist Jayalakshmi Eshwar, B.L.O.T.:Basic Love Of Things and Quicks and Games Lab will produce a spectacular performance ‘Antariksha Sanchar’ that will enquire into the universe we are always present in but never experience from the outside.

 

(The Story of Light Festival will be inaugurated on January 14 at 7 p.m. at Miramar beach. The five-day festival is open to all. For more details about the installations log on to www.storyoflight.org)

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