Nobel Week Lights is an annual light festival celebrating the power of ideas that change the world. The light installations are each inspired by or connected to the scientific discoveries, literature and peace work made by Nobel Prize laureates. With the desire to welcome the audience into the celebrations, Nobel Week Lights (NWL) invites international and local artists, designers and students to create large-scale public light artworks that transform the city of Stockholm during its darkest month.

Initiated during the challenges of the pandemic years, the fourth edition of NWL took place between the 2-10th of December 2023 welcoming an audience of 730,000 people. The festival presented 17 high impact light installations by 36 artists from 8 countries. The artworks were all within walking distance in the city core, encouraging the public to use public transport and visit the artworks by foot. This year’s edition of NWL was further brought to life by an ambitious audience outreach program that included 65+ guided tours in 6 different languages.

The selection of installations in the 2023 NWL program highlighted the ways in which light can elucidate Nobel awarded discoveries, create new perceptions of landmarks, as well as impact the audience through elevated experiences.

2023 Program Design and Highlights:

In the 2023 edition, NWL created a balance between installations using interactive and new technologies with the universal magic of analogue lighting effects. Light art and design has the unique capability of being both high artistic quality and accessible to a broad audience.

Light Spray (Fenyszoro) created an artwork with upcycled overhead projectors and ingenious automated mechanisms resulting in fully analogue moving images. Lucion’s ‘Moongarden’ used the traditional techniques of shadow play elegantly telling the stories of Nobel Literature laureate Jon Fosse in three massive spheres.

Studio Toer’s enchanting artwork transformed a rarely visited park as 400 ‘fireflies’ rippled down a cliff face, revealing the natural topography of the area in ways the audience had not experienced before.

Artworks such as ‘Waves’ by Theaterpixels visualised live streamed weather data through an 18m long installation made up of 6,480 individually programmed LEDs. The same source of weather data presented was the basis of Klas Hasselman’s 2021 Nobel Prize winning research in Physics.

Ivan Wahren and Simon Hagegård created a poetic LED sculpture at the top of the Stockholm Cathedral bringing the imagery of Tomas Tranströmmer to life. Juan Fuentes used the same technology in a completely different way, exploring the capacity of the eye to navigate optical illusions – showcased in his sculpture ‘Kinetic Perspectives’.

Also working with the way in which the eye perceives light, Valentine Isaeus-Berlin created her ‘Diaorama-Black Hole’, a sculpture in which the wavelengths of light seen by the eye versus the camera are visibly different.

Creating an intervention and revealing everyday beauty in our urban environment, ReThread and Jaime Reyes created a mathematical matrix of light between the pillar supports of the central bridge.

Three interactive artworks in this edition, included Chevalvert’s ‘Rythmus’, Limelight’s ‘Kickit’ as well as the work of legendary light artist Miguel Chevalier – who created a new work for the courtyard of the Stockholm City Museum.

NWL works annually with the Stockholm City Hall as the site for an iconic video mapping, this year created by Les Ateliers BK. The concept ‘History in Light’ was an homage to the 100 year anniversary of the building of the City Hall and included stunning visualizations of the original architectural drawings, the building process and the mosaics of the golden hall where the Nobel Laureates celebrate.

Audience Development and Outreach:

NWL works with audience development through activations and outreach activities. By facilitating a diverse range of entry points for the audience to participate in the festival, the public receives a more personalized invitation that can resonate for their individual interests.

Different ways to interact with the light installations included: a choir of light performance, night photography workshops on-site, a behind-the-scenes presentation on video mapping, a light run, professional networking, silent disco tours and an illuminated kayaking event where the artworks could be seen from the water. Guided tours were offered for free in Swedish, English, Arabic, French, German and Spanish.

2023 marked the pilot edition of a children’s installation created in direct collaboration with three classes of ten-year-olds (90 children total). Under the guidance of professional lighting designer Irina My, the children created kaleidoscopes as a way to learn about light as physics. The children’s creations were projected on a 28m long facade in the city center. Seeing their artwork transform the city core provided an empowering and democratizing experience, impacting their sense of belonging and ownership of their hometown.

Since the first year of NWL, it has been a priority to create a platform and professional opportunity for University Students. In 2023, NWL had the honour to collaborate with 63 students enrolled in 7 different higher education institutions in Sweden, including KTH -The Royal Institute of Technology, SKH -Stockholm University of the Arts, Konstfack -The University of Arts, Craft and Design, KKH -The Royal Institute of Art, KMH -The Royal College of Music, Jökopping University and Beckmans Design College.

NWL was happy to host the first meeting of Lýsa in the 2023 edition – the newly formed network of Nordic Light Art Festivals and Curators.


Nobel Week Lights is presented by the Nobel Prize Museum with support from the City of Stockholm, Stockholm’s Chamber of Commerce, Fagerhult, FAM, Grand Hôtel Stockholm and Einar Mattsson AB as well as numerous other partners.

Nobel Week Lights is initiated and produced by Annika Levin, Alexandra Manson and Lara Szabo Greisman from Troika AB. The 2023 Operations team consisted of Hans Davis (Producer), Alexander Mörner (Communications Manager) , Elise Cervin (Outreach and Hospitality) and Alexandra Moran (Head of Security). The Senior Production and Technical Advisor is Andreas Jakobsson (City of Stockholm’s Event Department). The Senior Urban Lighting Strategy Advisor is Anders Hedlund (Traffikontoret). Nightline is the primary partner for Technical Production with Johan Pettersson as Production Leader.

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