Amsterdam Light Festival Highlights: Our best Photos of the years 2014 to 2017 | The Netherlands
Amsterdam Light Festival Highlights 2014, 2105 & 2016 – Wintertime in Western Europe and the Netherlands is quite a difficult time: almost no snow combined with a lot of wind, rain and almost no sun. But instead of staying in the dark and trying to survive the winter months home depressed sitting under a lamp, the Dutch capital turns into a sea of light. Since 2012 the free accessible Amsterdam Light Festival installations are lightening up the Grachten and spread over the whole city center.
In the last 5 years, the Amsterdam light festival kept on growing continuously trying to be a little different with every edition. Every year again, thousands of national and international artists applying to be part of the festival and to create their very own, unique art installations using light in every form and in every possible way with one goal: to dive Amsterdam into the light. There two ways of exploring the art pieces, by boat or by foot, respectively by bike. And now it is up to you to turn the lights on for Amsterdam Light Festival 2017/2018. Join us on our Highlights of the last 3 years and see the Festival of Lights in the Dutch capital through a couple of men’s eyes.
Info & Tips: Amsterdam Light Festival 2017/2018
The beginning of this winter marks the start of the 6th edition of the Amsterdam Light Festival. Starting November 30th, 2017, the water exhibition as first part of the Amsterdam Light Festival will open to its guests. Until 21st of January 2018, various artworks all around the city will light up the canals and houses of Amsterdam. The light art installations will be illuminated daily, from 5 pm until 11 pm. During New Year’s Eve, the works will light up Amsterdam until 8 pm. As the name suggests, the best way to visit the water exhibition is by boat. Several festival partners of the festival offer a Water Colors Cruise. That’s how we are planning to see all the light installations, too. Read more >
Part two of the Amsterdam Light Festival will open its doors December 14th, 2017 located in the Marineterrein Amsterdam, a totally new place for the land exhibition. In walking distance to the Amsterdam Central Station, the history-charged place east of the center will be illuminated by various light art installation until January 7th, 2018. The land exposition is free and open daily from 5 pm to 10 pm (same exception: on New Year’s Eve, the Marineterrein will be closed from 8 pm on). How you wanna see the art, where you would like to go and how much time you are actually spending there is totally up to you, although, there are guided tours available. Part of the area is an array of artists to talk to, performances and readings. Additional to that, multiple places to eat and to warm up with a nice cup of mulled wine are located in the area, too. More about the Light Festival >
Amsterdam Light Festival Highlights 2016/2017
Last year, we did both, the walking and boat tour around the Amsterdam Light Festival installations along the Grachten/ Canals and the harbor area with diving bikes, projections on water fountains to the wonderful art pieces around the Hortus Botanicus Amsterdam, one of the oldest botanical gardens in the world. We like to start our walking tour at the Hermitage Amsterdam. The “festival heart” with info center, café and snack bar was located right behind the museum in the small park. And now, enjoy our photos of last years festival of light in the Dutch capital and we hope you will enjoy this year’s installations, too.
Amsterdam Light Festival 2015/2016 – Our Highlights
Welcome to the next light spectacle when art installations turning the anyway beautiful city of Amsterdam in a truly illuminated city of light! This year the art pieces of the open air exhibition are dedicated to the topic of the Amsterdam Light Festival 2015 “Friendship”. Every evening for 55 days the Amsterdam Light Festival offers visitors and citizens equally stunning views, intense colors and unexpected locations from 5 pm on until 11 pm. But before we start with our Light Tours, we sampled our favorite impressions of Amsterdam by Night. Take your time and walk along the Amsterdamse Grachten or bike along the river Amstel for the walking route. Or do it kind of typical Dutch and buy a ticket or even rent a boat with friends and families to see the lights from the perspective on water for some more unique impressions. Both route offering the visitors places they cannot reach doing the other route. So we would recommend to do it both ways. Art is Art. If you work as an artist and creative person yourself, you know what we are talking about. But still, we have our favorites chosen by the interaction between light and dark, the idea the artist was able to visualize and how it was finally implemented in the particular environment.
Walking route of the Light Festival 2015/2016
One of the highlights of this year’s lights festival was undoubtedly the Northern Lights Installation by artist Aleksandra Stratimirovic above the river Amstel in front the Opera House. After we spent 3 weeks in Iceland and seeing a lot of these magical northern lights over us in Iceland in nature, we can say she succeeded! Impressive by boat and walking over the bridge. Walking in the southern direction along the Amstel river, you will reach the next interactive light monument, the “Uniting Lightstar” by Venividimultiplex Ontwerpstudio. Dedicated to all the states of the European Union, the spectators have to interact to make it shine in all its beauty. Tip: press all the buttons the same time! The Hermitage itself is an awesome place to be. During the Amsterdam Light Festival, you find a couple of interactive light pieces in the garden. Right next to a Café and places for children to work with their own creativity, the “Art-Garden” is a nice place to spend some time in. Follow the lights and especially all the hobby photographers and you won’t lose your way! Interesting art: the unfinished “Bridge” by Tomás Ribas, the 3D projection at the “Canal House” by Irma de Vries and the perspective art piece “Filos” by Univate are guiding your way to the Wertheimpark. In the center of the park, you will find an old tree with colorful birds appearing and disappearing in between the branches, the “Winged Migration” by Tessel Schmidt & Judith Hofland. What a wonderful art projection with sound where you feel as part of a Dutch safari through the city. Warming yourself up with a hot chocolate (with or without a shot of Rum) and you are perfectly prepared for your walk through the Park of the Botanical Garden of Amsterdam. The interesting installation “Melody Dots 21” by Yoko Seyama took us under its spell. Take your time to watch it, seriously. Warming yourself up with art! Walking further through the park, the lights guided us to the interactive art “Social Sparkles” by Studio Toer. Run for fun, that’s all we can say!
Boat Route of the Light Festival 2015/2016
After driving underneath the Northern Lights, our boat took the way over the Herengracht passing by the filament art “Paths Crossing” by Ralf Westerhof and the “Talking Heads” by Viktor Vicsek. One of the most impressive installations for us is “Run Beyond” by Angelo Bonello, when a person of light tries to jump over a Grachten-bridge! On our way through along the beautiful Herengracht, the boat drives underneath the “Open Lounge” by Géraud Périole to welcome all the visitors and fans of the Amsterdam Light Festival 2015/2016! There are even smaller art pieces along the Grachten ride to enjoy. But our next highlight is waiting in the Oosterdoks of Amsterdam! What an inspiring moment, when our boat enters the wave of light. It actually feels like driving into an ice cave in Iceland: pure, magical and full of light. You can see this artwork by walking and by boat when two cities in changing light and colors seem to merge in “A Tale of Two Cities” by Vendel de Wolf and to finally fall into the Nieuw Herengracht.
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Amsterdam Light Festival Highlights of the past years 2014-2016
We don’t get so much snow in Amsterdam unfortunately. But if it is snowing, Amsterdam turns into a winter wonderland! Noone is biking or driving but instead enjoying every second in the snow. So did we, when last winter the Dutch capital put on its white winter dress and calmed down for a couple of hours. See you around the beautiful Lights of Amsterdam in the illuminated Grachten of the Dutch capital warming up with a Glühwein or hot chocolate. If you need any more tips for your trip to Amsterdam, let us know!
Karl & Daan.