13 - 15 October 2017
Present day Lewes is one of the most attractive towns in Sussex, nestling in the South Downs National Park, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and a Dark Sky Reserve. But Lewes is a town with a surprising and intriguing past. Looking at it now, who would guess that within living memory it was a significant industrial centre, with foundries and cement and gas works?
The 2017 Festival will bring to life lesser known stories and the people who have transformed and influenced the town over the centuries. In the High Street, wealthy businessmen collected jewels and commissioned paintings whilst, on the other side of the river, the Cliffe area has remained a community of traders for hundreds of years. There was once an extensive network of rail lines and sidings in the heart of Lewes and, for several centuries, the river was a major artery for transporting goods and materials.
The specially-commissioned light installations, enhanced by poetry, performance and music, are by national and international designers from a wide variety of backgrounds.
Award-winning lighting design practices participating in the Festival have portfolios of work which include: Kensington Palace, the Royal Opera House, the Design Museum, King’s Cross Square, Selfridges, lighting strategies for Liverpool and Chester, and performance and event lighting around the world such as Madison Square Gardens and Glyndebourne.
Graham Festenstein, Festival Director, runs an independent creative lighting design consultancy for architecture, interior design, museum and heritage schemes, exhibitions and events, landscape and public spaces.
Philip Rose, Festival Community Coordinator, is Head of Production Arts at Sussex Downs College and Artistic Director of Lewes Youth Theatre. He trained as a classical actor and enjoys a varied career in acting, music, writing and teaching. Both Graham and Philip are long-term residents of the area.
LewesLight aims to give students and young people valuable vocational experience in the workplace, which will help them towards future careers. Since the inception of the festival, students from Sussex Downs College (aged 16-18 years) have been involved in setting up and running the event, liaising closely with the organisers and artists. This year they will be joined by undergraduates from the University of Brighton, Northbrook College and Plumpton College, a number of whom will be acting as tour guides.
The festival was inaugurated in 2015, the UNESCO International Year of Light, which highlighted the vital role that light plays in our daily lives.
Artists and designers include:
John Agard (Playwright, poet and short story writer)
James Duffin (Lighting Designer)
Graham Festenstein (Lighting Designer)
Hunter Gatherer (Art Lewery & Jack Beccegato)
integratedlight (Chris Beasley)
Ruth Kerr (Composer)
Susan Lake (Lighting Designer)
Maggie Lambert (Artist)
Peter Messer (Artist)
Nulty + (Ellie Coombs, Clair Hamill & Team)
Pedro Pinto (Lighting Designer)
Guyan Porter (Artist)
Studio 29 (Margareth Sunjoto)
Studio Fractal (Ruth Maskell & Team)
Sussex Downs College (Digital Media Design, Robert Cunningham)
Twinkle & Ting (Leora Honeyman & Neil Marsh)
Karen Van Creveld (Lighting Designer)
Jack Wates (Artist)
LewesLight is organised in partnership with Sussex Downs College and Lewes Youth Theatre and is supported by Lewes District Council, Lewes Town Council, leading companies in the lighting industry and other sponsors, including Adams & Remers, Cheesmur Building Contractors, Harveys Brewery, Lewes Chamber of Commerce, Lewes Smith and Stay Lewes