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Caius to don a technicolour dreamcoat for Cambridge e-Luminate

  • 09 February 2018

Cambridge e-luminate festivalA magical illumination will adorn the Caius’ Waterhouse Building this evening for the launch of the 2018 e-Luminate Cambridge Festival, the city’s annual celebration of light, science and art.

Designed by French light artist Patrice Warrener, the installation, entitled The Colours of Caius College, will use the Chromolithe technique to give the impression that the façade has been painted by vibrant, glowing colours. Thus enhancing the beauty and splendour of Alfred Waterhouse’s design and showing the 19th century building in a spectacular new light.

Pioneered by Warrener 30 years ago, the Chromolithe technique highlights architectural features by painting them in light, rather than masking them with a projected image. This unique process transforms buildings into bold frescos, bursting to life with colour and light.

Warrener has worked on over 100 illuminations across the world, lighting up famous landmarks such as Westminster Abbey and York Minster. This is the first time his artistry has come to Cambridge.

Running from 9-14 February, this year’s festival takes the theme of Colour and is guest curated by Caius art historian and broadcaster Dr James Fox.  Well-known for his exciting work on colour, Dr Fox has presented a BBC4 programme on the subject (A History of Art in Three Colours) and is due to release a major book entitled The Meaning of Colour, published by Penguin (Allen Lane), later this year.

Dr Fox says: “Patrice Warrener is one of the world’s leading light artists and I am thrilled that Caius is going to be reimagined by him. The Waterhouse facade is an exquisitely detailed piece of architecture. Patrice will inject it with light, colour and life. I can’t wait to see it when it’s up and running. The e-Luminate Festival brings light and warmth to a dark and cold time of year. I’ve loved it since it started, and I’m delighted to be co-curating the 2018 edition.”

On Saturday 10 February, Dr Fox will be speaking at the festival’s special event Cambridge Colour Talk, held at the Cambridge Union Chamber. Along with physicist Dr Helen Czerski, lighting designer Colin Ball, author Spike Bucklow and artist David Bachelor, Dr Fox will aim to answer key questions on the topic including: What is colour? How does it affect us? And what does it mean?

Now in its sixth year, the e-Luminate Cambridge Festival has become one of the most popular events in the city. Every February crowds gather on the historic, cobbled streets to see some of Cambridge’s most recognisable buildings illuminated with rich and powerful designs.


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