PASSAGE – A Colorful Light-Transporting Installation by Till Nowak at Rendsburg High Bridge (Germany)

PASSAGE from Till Nowak on Vimeo.

On September 13, 2013, the region of Schleswig Holstein celebrated the centenary of the Rendsburg High Bridge. The celebration was not with candles, but with a lighting design installation that is to remain at the bridge after the anniversary. It’s a regional, common project that is supported by 13 communes of “Lebens- und Wirtschaftsraum” (bio and economy area), as well as by 24 communes of “Eider- und Kanalregion” (Eider and canal region).

The light art installation PASSAGE is interactive. Everyone can influence it. On each side of the river a solid stele with a metal control wheel has been installed. By turning the wheel the passers-by can choose the light color on their respective side of the bridge. When the transporter bridge is about to perform its usual function, it takes the colored light with its own spotlight and transports it to the other side of the river. Once it reaches the other side, the light can be changed again and sent back to the other side.

Thus, the art installation is a game for both pedestrians and spectators. It connects the sides of the river. It highlights the function of the transporter bridge, while also adding an abstract quality to it. The lighting design represents the transport of immaterial things, such as ideas, thoughts and characters. With different colors of light, it simultaneously draws attention to the bridge. Moreover, it is not a computer who controls it, it is not static – it is controlled by users of the transporter bridge, visitors of the bridge or inhabitants of the community. In addition to this interactive light show, there is an alternative mode for when the transporter bridge is not active. Then, the light color can be set on both sides of the river, independent from each other.