Canary Wharf was transformed into a prism of light this summer, as it welcomed newly commissioned, dynamic artworks onto the Estate in London.

Following the huge success in the past, of Canary Wharf’s Winter Lights and Connected by Light festivals, held during the year’s darkest months,** Summer Lights** was the first of its kind, a Light Art festival celebrating the natural light of the Sun, with installations using zero energy.

Exploding into life from sunrise, the collection of entrancing installations used a combination of the sun, mirrors and colour spectrums to project and celebrate light in its most natural form. While creating a world of intricate patterns and reflections which were visually dazzling, the installations also shone a light on a number of important messages. From sustainability, plastic pollution and energy consumption, to LGBTQIA+ and equality; these important themes were all highlighted through the language of light.

Among the line-up of vibrant works was *Ocean Rise* by artist Aphra Shemza. Built using sustainable materials, the shape of the piece emulated a wave in the ocean and was accompanied by a bespoke soundscape that visitors could access through a QR code. Another highlight included *Whirl* by Helena Doyle, Tom Cherry & Temple, which transformed the wind into a dynamic dance of colour and light. Sitting beneath the domed structure, the audience could enjoy the mesmerising light show overhead. *Circle of Light* by Toy Studio, wrapped itself around cabot Square Fountain. The colours of the spectrum were mapped out in relation to the sun’s path. From dawn to dusk, the reach of the coloured shadows move depending on the angle of the sun. *Out of the Coccoon* by Amberlights was a colourful, interactive seating installation, visitors could walk and sit around the structure and see how the colours change before their eyes. *Kilp* by Toystudio, was another seating installation, based on celestial maps and representing the constellations found in the skies above Canary Wharf, the perforations create ever-changing shadows. *Round and Round* by Martin Richman createsd a lively space full of reflecting and refracting shapes and colours via turning circles, bringing the Jubilee Park ponds to life. TTine Bech had two installations, *Summer Cloud* a reflective cloud allowing visitors to see themselves and others in the iconic Canary Wharf buildings, and *Shine your Colours*, transparent coloured glass panels created a space focusing on wellbeing and invited people to take playful photos of themselves and friends.

Open for eight weeks from June until mid-August, this unique festival hosted eleven artworks created by some of the UK’s leading light artists. Positioned across the Canary Wharf estate, in prime outdoor locations, visitors were encouraged to soak up the sun and explore each of the works at their own leisure.

Visitors could also download the Summer Lights podcast, via their smart phone, to hear directly from the artists about the inspiration behind each piece, as they walked around the exhibits.

The selected artworks were the latest addition to the Estate’s public art collection, which is the UK’s largest collection of free to visit public art. More than 75 permanent works by over 50 world-renowned artists are on display across the Estate.


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