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Enchantment of lights

Photos and text by Cristina Archinto


Since dawn of time, light has always fascinated man because it represents the supreme power to light darkness. First, of course, it was fire that illuminated and defended man, then Edison brought light into homes with mass production of lamps and electricity, although he was not the actual inventor.
Today we have somewhat lost the ability to 'see in the dark' and in the absence of daylight we are used to have everything illuminated, but despite this we continue to be attracted by its power and light sources manage to excite like few things in the world.
By activating special cognitive abilities, light excites, impresses and generally creates well-being, perhaps also linked to that hidden primordial memory, and brings us to a sense of harmony with our surroundings. Moreover, if a light source, perhaps coloured, is also associated with a sound flow, such as a piece of music, an almost tactile sensation is evoked by 'feeling' the light.

This is more or less what happens at the sensory art exhibition at the Botanical Garden of Rome Incanto di luci (Enchantment of light). A one and a half kilometre long light art path conceived by light designer Andreas Boehlke, with evocative music by composer and sound designer Burkhard Fincke; works that tell in an artistic way some corners of this wonderful place. The installations, with LED bulbs for minimal environmental impact, bring us a completely different botanical garden, we can really say in a different light. Trees and plants in sumptuous colours, meadows full of flashing lights or balls that light up in a thousand different shades of colours, stairways carpeted with fireflies or luminous silhouettes of reindeer grazing among the bushes, and more.