Light shows in Bergamo’s old upper city centre from 7 to 25 September 2016 for the international “I Maestri del Paesaggio” (masters of landscape) exhibition. Clay Paky is celebrating its 40th anniversary at Casa Suardi in Piazza Vecchia with an exhibition that tells the story of the MoMS, a new museum devoted to modern show lighting. The films that won the international “Riprenditi la città, Riprendi la luce” (Film your city. Catch the light) contest will also be screened.
From 7 to 25 September, Clay Paky, the Bergamo-based leading automated light manufacturer that brings the magic of light into the largest television shows, theatrical performances and public events in the world, presents “Città Alta by Light”: an exciting tour of five lighting installations in Bergamo’s old upper city centre. The Città Alta (upper city) will be the setting of a wonderful son et lumière: the façades of the buildings will be covered with a magical light show created using Clay Paky equipment. As Clay Paky’s CEO, Pio Nahum, said, “all the installations are designed to enhance the existing beautiful architecture using light in order to create a cultural experience, which is not simply a show. By embellishing the historical features of the places where the installations and light shows are created, Clay Paky is once again showing the attention it pays to the local area and its culture.”
The lighting has been designed by the theatrical set designer Sebastian Romano: the evocative power of the light, images and music tells the story of the beauty of uncontaminated nature, and plunges the audience into a magical dream dimension. The installations have been set up at five different sites in the old upper city centre: Porta San Giacomo (Saint James’s Gate), the Torre della Campanella (Tower of the Small Bell), Piazza Vecchia (Old Square), the Torre del Gombito (Gombito Tower), and Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe (Shoe Market Square).
The show is designed to start from Porta San Giacomo, since it is the most important entrance to Bergamo’s upper city centre. It has strong symbolic significance and is located in a strategic position. The Gate will be illuminated with a pattern of beams that alternates with a colourful textural projection that covers the entire architectural surface. The aim is to create evocative lighting that enhances the architecture of the monument, and the Lion of Saint Mark found on top of it.
Moving to the next installation, we arrive at the Torre della Campanella, an entrance onto the Visconti portico of lancet arches. This arcade is evidence of the Visconti domination of Bergamo from 1332 to 1428, the year in which the city passed under Venetian rule. For this occasion, the outside surface and internal passage of the tower will be illuminated by architectural spotlights, which are particularly suitable for this kind of installation and able to create different perspective planes.
Moving on, we get to Piazza Vecchia, the main square of the city, which will host the principal show of the event. The lighting design in this square is characterized by the use of video projectors together with lights. In particular, a strip of light designed to look like water will be projected around the whole perimeter of the square using beam shapers and gobos. A video on the theme of water will also be projected onto the façade of the Angelo Mai Library: a sequence of films of waterfalls will cover the entire architectural surface creating a striking effect, which will be accompanied by a tasteful sound track.
We next move on from Piazza Vecchia to Torre del Gombito, a symbol of the medieval turreted town, which was erected at the beginning of the 1200s. The 57-yard high tower stands out for its size, height and brickwork. This architectural landmark, which is visible from many parts of the city, will be transformed into a bright block of light which fades gradually from deep blue to yellow.
Our tour ends in Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe, which has always been one of the key crossroads in the upper city. It has been a vital centre of the local economy since the middle ages. This square will be completely covered with images, music and a magical light show created using Clay Paky fixtures. Drawings of uncontaminated nature commissioned exclusively for this event will be projected onto the façades of the buildings around the edge of the square. A carpet of flowers will be recreated on the ground over the entire surface of the Piazza. The Antro della Fonte Secca/Fontana del Lantro will be inundated with blue light to enhance the symbolic power and role of water as a generating source of nature and life. The dynamic sequence of assorted effects, interspersed with music by various authors, will enswathe the audience in a charming kaleidoscopic effect.
The light shows will take place every evening from 7 to 25 September, alternating every half hour in Piazza Vecchia and Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe, at the following times:
21:00 Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe
21:30 Piazza Vecchia
22:00 Piazza Mercato delle Scarpe
22:30 Piazza Vecchia
To celebrate the 40th anniversary of its founding, Clay Paky has organized two events to promote the “culture of light”. They will take place at Casa Suardi in Piazza Vecchia, one of the buildings of Bergamo University. The first event is an exhibition that tells the story of the MoMS, the new Museum of Modern Show lighting, hosted by Clay Paky at its headquarters in Seriate in the Province of Bergamo. The second is the showing of the films that won the three editions of the international video contest “Riprenditi la città, Riprendi la luce” (Film your city. Catch the light). In this competition, organized by the AIDI (Associazione Italiana di Illuminazione – Italian Lighting Association) with financial support from Clay Paky, under 30-year-olds filmed light and their cities and produced 60-second videos.
The exhibition and screenings will be open to the public every day from 7 to 25 September from 9:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. with no break. Admittance is free.
MoMS: Museum of Modern Show lighting
The MoMS is curated by Clay Paky and hosted on its premises at 3/B Via Pastrengo, Seriate, Province of Bergamo. It is the first museum in Europe specifically devoted to light, not regarded merely as a useful natural phenomenon, but seen as a means to arouse emotions. The exhibition aims to reveal the playful, theatrical and evocative nature of this important aspect of the physical world. Visitors discover so-called “lighting effects”, which are the technological tools lighting designers use to work with light. Light is the star of the interactive, multimedia exhibition, and the visitor is immersed in spectacular attractive effects with a strong emotional impact. All the areas in which show lighting is a key element are represented in the museum: concerts, theatrical musicals, TV shows, night clubs, theme park attractions, exhibitions, inaugural events, installations and urban embellishment.
The museum has a historical archive and a website (www.moms-museum.org), and may be used as a venue for workshops and training courses for show lighting professionals, students of vocational schools and universities, and enthusiasts of this constantly evolving industry, which combines entertainment with the most advanced technology. The museum is open from Monday to Friday (except public holidays) from 9:00 am to 12:30 and from 2:30 pm to 6:00 pm. Admittance to the museum is free.