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Alley of Light by Serge Schoemaker Architects & Digiluce

The wave-like motion of light within Amsterdam’s Alley of Light generates a unique spatial experience.

Details: Designed by Serge Schoemaker Architects and Digiluce, Alley of Light is an installation built for the 2014-2015 Amsterdam Light Festival, a 12-metre-long passage surrounded by a four-metre-high three-dimensional matrix of 2,000 handmade lights. 320 vertical strings, with six lights each, hang in a black steel cage greeting visitors with a wave-like motion inspired by, and derived from, the physics of underwater lighting effects.

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Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015 Serge Schoemaker Architects

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Alley of Light - Amsterdam Light Festival 2014-2015Serge Schoemaker Architects

“During the 2014-2015 Amsterdam Light Festival you can experience Amsterdam’s most sparkling street this winter: the Alley of Light. Dutch-based design offices Serge Schoemaker Architects & Digiluce created this twelve-metre-long passage that is surrounded by a four-metre-high three-dimensional matrix of 2000 handmade lights.

The Alley of Light is an urban space defined by light. Recalling the typical narrow alleys of red and grey bricks in the historic centre of Amsterdam, this installation visualises the theme of this third annual light festival in Amsterdam, A Bright City, in a radical way. Open, dynamic and enchanting, this alley represents the best qualities that a contemporary city like Amsterdam has to offer.

The architectural light installation consists of 320 vertical strings with six lights each, hanging in a black steel cage construction. The footprint of the installation measures 10 by 12 metres. It is placed on an existing platform on Jonas Daniël Meijerplein, which could be considered a stage for the design. As the installation rises one metre above ground level, visitors have to climb several steps to enter this sparkling world.

The atmosphere and sense of space within the twelve metre-long passage change continuously thanks to its programmed variation of light configurations that never repeats. The lights continuously change intensity. The wave-like motion of light within the installation generates a unique spatial experience: when all lights are lit, the passage appears enclosed and intimate; as soon as the lights dim, the space becomes fluid and the borders of the alley start to fade.

Alongside the internal experience, the installation is perceived externally as an eye-catching three-dimensional animation. The motion of light within the strong geometric shape of the matrix can be seen from afar and invites people to experience the installation from within. The algorithm that controls the individual lights and generates the wave-like motion through the grid, is inspired by and derived from the physics of underwater lighting effects.

The individual lights are designed as abstract vertical lines. Each handmade light consists of two LEDs enclosed by an acrylic tube. The tubes are covered with white paper and sealed with heat shrink tubes. Next to the nearly 2000 lights, the installation consists of one-and-a-half kilometres of cabling.

During the Amsterdam Light Festival the Alley of Light is located in the historic centre of Amsterdam on Jonas Daniël Meijerplein, between the Jewish Historical Museum and the Portuguese-Israeli Synagogue. It runs until 4 January 2015. Open daily from 5 until 10 pm. The experience of the installation is supported on site by music from Machinefabriek/ Rutger Zuydervelt.

Client: Amsterdam Light Festival Location: Amsterdam, Netherlands Partners in charge: Serge Schoemaker (Serge Schoemaker Architects), Luuk van Laake (Digiluce) Design: Serge Schoemaker, Beatrice Nespega Engineering: Luuk van Laake Production team: Alexander Beeloo, Gonçalo Moreira, Roxana Vakil Mozafari Electronics production: Marcel van den Heuvel, Tom Engelbert, Ivo Raijmakers, Teun Voets, Hidde de Wit Structural consulting: Jaap Aalberts Photography: Raoul Kramer Documentary video: 5GradenOost Music on site: Machinefabriek/Rutger Zuydervelt Sponsored by: HellermannTyton, Aukes Theatertechniek, Drahtwerk St.Ingbert Thanks to: Lara Captan, Marco Eggens, Kiki van der Hart, Mark van Hooff, Rian Knop, Chantal van der Kroft, Daniela Oliviera, Maurijn Rouwet, Siba Sahabi, Martina Salvi, Astrid Sanders, Oscar Sanders, Hugo Schoemaker, Jeanne Tan, Lars van Vianen, René Vlemmix, Andy Yu, Stefanie Zweifel”

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