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GLOW Eindhoven 2018 – A Very Cool Light Art Festival

Posted on Nov 13, 2018 by

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They call Eindhoven “The City of Light”. I’m not sure who came up with this idea, but I was intrigued by the name, since all I knew about the city was that it was an industrial-looking, pretty depressing place in the Netherlands. I looked it up and found out that Eindhoven was the home of the first Dutch match factory and of the original Phillips light bulb factory. But I learned that light is also a symbol for the constant innovation happening in technology and design in this city. So, the nickname made sense, after all!

This year I went to see the GLOW Festival for the first time. It’s a light art festival, aiming to show the city’s connection to light. It was a rainy day, and it continued pouring also in the evening, but people seemed determined to see the GLOW route. Armed with umbrellas and rain coats, they were strolling the streets following the five km route, stopping here and there for the art installations, playing with them, marvelling at them. This year’s theme was “Shadows & Light”. I loved it! The best thing was that many of the art pieces combined music, light and motion. The rain played a role too in creating a spooky atmosphere in some places — it looked as if the artist designed it to be like that. As much as I disliked it for giving me a hard time while taking pictures, I loved seeing the rain coloured in different nuances. 

My favourite art works were: Confluence, at the Catharinakerk, The Light Tower on the Phillips building and The Immersive Decelerator, where an entire market square was covered in coloured patterns. They were just magical. 


A very interesting effect was created by the blue light coming from the Pullman hotel, which was a central piece in setting the mood for the entire route. The “Something Blue” art installation was visible from 20 km from Eindhoven! The sky above the city centre turned deep blue, looking as if an alien spaceship will soon emerge from the clouds. I also liked the idea of including a few abandoned buildings in this project, bringing them to life for a few hours, transforming something that is sad-looking into a beautiful art work. 

Along the route there were places where you could stop for a mulled wine or to roast marshmallows on an open fire (set up in metallic containers next to the restaurant). We had such a wonderful time! The rain eventually stopped somewhere after the half of the route, giving us time to dry before taking the train back home. You can still see GLOW until the 17th of November — if you have the chance, I definitely recommend it!

Confluence - Catharinakerk



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