Jason Bruges Studio was commissioned by The Shard to create Western Europe’s highest art installation to celebrate London’s festive season and NYE 2014.
Every evening from Friday 19th December until New Year’s Eve, the spire of The Shard came alive with a dynamic piece of public art designed to reflect and evoke the spirit and energy of London.
Visible across London, Shard Lights was a daily-changing light display from 5pm to midnight capturing the energy, dynamism and colour of the city, building to a climax on New Year’s Eve.
Shard Lights occupied the highest 40 storeys of The Shard. The nightly event was designed to celebrate the year The Shard came to life, opening to businesses and the public and becoming an internationally recognised beacon for modern London.
The latest technical innovations were used in the ground-breaking artwork, including back projection into a mist within the spire and the use of the world’s first IP rated moving head LED lamp, which was supplied by entertainment lighting company SGM. The lights created a dynamic colour canvas across the façade of London’s most iconic tower. The complex installation was managed by Production Resource Group, specialists in large-scale theatrical and stadium events.
On New Year’s Eve the countdown to 2015 was created by a giant pixelated back projection to The Shard’s apartments and was synced to work with London’s famous New Year’s Eve Fireworks Display. The NYE celebration lighting was comprised of layers of searchlights, sparkling strobes, a dynamic colour wash and a 2015 numeric super graphic.
Jason described the challenges of installing Shard Lights: ‘Creating Western Europe’s highest art installation is an enormous challenge. We’re dealing with high winds and heavy equipment, but the opportunity to create something on this epic scale is worth the effort. Once the lights are installed they are controlled remotely so we can sit in the warmth and enjoy our hard work!’
‘Shard Lights will be a theatre in the sky, and it will be a key feature of the London skyline for the twelve days of the project. This kind of architectural scale art installation represents the type of project we thrive on at Jason Bruges Studio.’
Irvine Sellar, developer and joint owner of The Shard, said: “The Shard has become a beacon for modern London and is globally recognised as an emblem of our capital. We wanted to create an unprecedented installation that takes an architectural icon and turns it into a piece of public art as a gift that every Londoner can enjoy during the festive season. ‘Shard Lights’ reflects the diversity and energy of our wonderful city and will put us on a par with the celebrations in global cities like Paris, New York and Sydney.”