Lux Helsinki promises to be bigger than ever

Lux Helsinki. Photo: Jussi Hellsten

The forthcoming Lux Helsinki light festival leads festival-goers from the Kansalaistori square in the city centre to the pretty district of Etu-Töölö. Satellite installations will spread the festival wider than ever before.

Taking place from Saturday 5 January to Wednesday 9 January 2019, Lux Helsinki will once again present a brilliant range of light art that includes both international favourites and unique commissioned works, while also showing some of Finland’s most iconic monuments in a new light. The official Lux Helsinki route stretches from the Kansalaistori square via Finlandia Hall and Kunsthalle Helsinki to the National Museum of Finland and has been designed as a dramaturgical series that should be seen in numerical order from start to finish.

Lux Helsinki 2019 is a truly diverse light festival that presents both new and old Helsinki: it celebrates our amazing new central library while at the same time recalling the revolutionary history of the Old Student House. Huge media screens will be transformed into tools for art that explores some of the biggest issues facing us in the future,” says Ilkka Paloniemi, Curator of Lux Helsinki.

Light art that entertains, manipulates architecture and takes a stand

Lux Helsinki features the leading expertise in Finnish and international light art: the installations utilise numerous different techniques that enable light to be harnessed for the purposes of street art, entertainment and tackling social issues. The official route starts from the Kansalaistori square, where light art will take over the huge media screens outside Sanomatalo and the Helsinki Music Centre. The End of the Digital New Age by Finnish artist Mikko Kunnari and Moonlight by Italian artist Marco Brianza both take a stand on the waste light that dominates urban spaces by using these advertising platforms for art.

Reflection Studies, an interactive installation by American artist Zach Lieberman, will be projected onto the façade of the Kunsthalle Helsinki art museum, inviting viewers to unleash their creativity on a large light table that projects the motion and patterns onto the wall. The Nervanderin puistikko park in turn will feature a 12-metre kinetic installation by Dutch artist Ivo Schoofsentitled Large Pendulum Wave, a special version of which has been created especially for Lux Helsinki based on the song Scorpius by Finnish band Op:l Bastards.

The route winds up at the garden of the National Museum of Finland, where Mexican artist Ghiju Díaz de Léon brings the façade of the museum to life with projection mapping that manipulates the architecture. Shelter Seekers tackles the issues of migration and climate change through the metaphor of endangered monarch butterflies. Large Pendulum Wave and Shelter Seekers will also entertain commuters and other early birds on Wednesday 9 January during the second annual Lux Morning event.

Satellite installations make the festival bigger than ever

In addition to the twelve installations along the official route, Lux Helsinki will also present satellite installations that extend the festival for the first time across the city’s borders all the way to Hanasaari in the neighbouring municipality of Espoo. Satellite installations can be seen at the Old Student House, the Annantalo Arts Centre, the Kaapelitehdas Cultural Centre, and the Swedish-Finnish Cultural Centre Hanaholmen at Hanasaari. Altogether, Lux Helsinki 2019 presents around 30 works of light art.

Lux Helsinki is growing all the time, as more and more cooperation partners are joining in our arctic light festival and supporting the festival’s ambition of being one of Finland’s most important contemporary art and public events in the heart of the winter,” Paloniemi says.

Lux Helsinki, 5-9 January 2019, 5pm–10pm
Lux Morning (installations 10 & 12), 9 January 2019, 7am–9am

This event is free of charge, fully accessible and open to visitors of all ages.

Main partners: Sun Effects, Clear Channel
Partners: OP Helsinki, SATO
Network partners: Granlund, Johan & Nyström, City, HYY Group, Amnesty International Finland, Local Crew, Sanoma Media Finland, Ramboll, Swedish-Finnish Cultural Centre Hanaholmen
Production partners: Bright Group
In collaboration with: U.S. Embassy Finland

The Lux Helsinki light festival is organised by the City of Helsinki and produced by Sari Väänänen. Sun Effects Oy is responsible for the design and production of the Lux Helsinki route and installations. The festival is curated by Ilkka Paloniemi ja Matti Jykylä.

Media contacts:

Annina Pikkumäki
Mellakka Helsinki
+358 40 575 5776


MyHelsinki Material Bank


Lux Helsinki

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Helsinki Marketing is a company owned by the City of Helsinki. It is responsible for operative city marketing and business partnerships for Helsinki. Helsinki Marketing interacts with local residents, visitors, decision-makers and experts. 

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Helsinki Marketing is a company owned by the City of Helsinki. It is responsible for operative city marketing and business partnerships for Helsinki. Helsinki Marketing interacts with local residents, visitors, decision-makers and experts.