newsletter link
mondo arc

The Story of Light

Issue 84 April / May 2015

The Story of Light, a festival celebrating light - kicked off 2015 in India, aligned with the International Year of Light and Light based Technologies declared by the UN. Here, we take you through the highlights of the event.

45 installations testing and manipulating the possibilities of light - as ray, wave and particle - cropped up across Panjim in Goa, and most spectacularly on its beaches, flooded with sunlight by day and moonlight by night. Pioneered by Jaya Ramchandani, who has a background in astronomy and Nash Paul D’Souza, a designer, the premise of the festival lay at the convergence of their backgrounds. It was an effort to envision what lighting will be in the future, and located itself at the intersection of science and art, with content that was both experiential and educational.


Artists: Jaden Hastings and Melanie King 

This installation used the photographic printing technique of cyanotype, which produces cyan blue prints through the reaction of chemicals when exposed to light. This public installation invited people to physically interact with a chemically treated fabric to create the world’s largest cyanotype print, breaking all existing records. Working with sunlight, the possibilities of light became a physical, as well as visual experience for the public, while familiarising them with the process of cyanotype making. The work was an extension of the artists’ existing practices, which explore the philosophical implications of art and science.


Artists: Tsuneo Sekiguchi and Giulia Moiraghi

Tsuneo Sekiguchi made his first rainbow-hut on Anjuna beach over two decades ago. Since then he has been attempting various renditions in different scales, exploring the potential of rainbows generated by an interaction of sunlight, water and mirrors. His idea is to bring people together in a spiritual and philosophical communion. The rainbows created inside the space of the hut function like the glow of the fire that brought people around it in ancient times, for ideological meditations and discussions. In this daylight installation, the mirrors immersed in water act as a prism to split light rays into its constituent colours, which are received in the interior of the hut, creating a magical space.


Artists: Madhulika S

Madhulika, the founder and president of Adhya Educational Society, a not-for-profit, has been applying innovative pedagogical experiments - using art to teach children mathematics, science and history. An extension of her ongoing work, this collaborative project between the children and herself, creates an overwhelming spectacle out of the relevance of light in civilisational history, culture and time. This public installation communicates the story of light in an interactive format integrating indigenous histories, folklore and tales from traditional performances in India with the dominant Western discourse on the history of light. Thorough research and innovation went into this project that managed to weave in contemporary issues with the human imagination and the experience of light in its various forms, be it the sun or fire, creating an educational as well as enthralling experience for all its spectators.


Artists: Ragini Bhow and Treeya Brooks 

A series of installations on Miramar beach explored the reflective and refractive properties of light on surfaces, edges and shapes. In sunlight, the artists created streams of rainbows reflected on the sandy beaches by interacting the omnipresent light with iridescent material and mirrors. At night, the installation responded to a single artificial light source to draw a remarkable line of light disappearing into the still waters. The artists, having worked frequently with immersive environs, were able to explore the experiential value of an observer in contemplation of the present moment with light as the natural demarcation of time.


Artists: Ritika Karnani

In this interactive work, the artist recognises how man’s perception of time has always been distinctly visual, even when time as a quantity is hardly visual in nature. From sundials to the modern electronic watch, time has always been ‘read’. Time is also defined against the motions of the sun, the primary source of light. Here the artist tries to identify other sensorial passages into one’s idea of a single minute, by encouraging participants to measure the passage of time under the influence of stimuli such as distinct odour, white noise and so on. This immersive experience references light through its absence; the participants are all blindfolded and the process becomes a meditation on other senses.


The Story of Light

Pic: Mitwa A.V

  • 'Photopoesis' Pic: Mitwa A.V

  • 'Panjim Rainbow Hut' Pic: Mitwa A.V

  • 'A Spectacle' Pic: Roheet Hede

  • 'Wavelength' Pic: Roheet Hede

  • 'Wait A Minute' Pic: Tinka Kalajzic Ines

Related Articles


Follow us on…

Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Twitter Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Facebook Follow Mondo Arc Magazine on Linked In

mondo arc india

darc awards DWLF IALD PLDC LRO