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Canary Wharf Winter Lights

January is rarely a popular month. The detox has begun, cash is tight and it’s just so dull and dreary outside.

We could all do with a little something to brighten up our lives, which is why we can’t wait for Canary Wharf’s Winter Lights festival to return for a third year this month. It’s just what the doctor ordered, a perfect remedy that will literally brighten up those dark January evenings.

From Monday 16th January until Friday 27th January you’ll find light installations and interactive art displayed across the Canary Wharf Estate – and all 30 pieces are free for you to visit and enjoy.

To make the most of the Winter Lights festival you’ll need to walk the entire trail, but if you’re stuck for time here are just a few of the installations that you really must not miss.

What to see at the Canary Wharf Winter Lights festival


Mostafa Hadi and Pol Marchandise (Odeaubois), Koert Vermeulen (ACT Lighting Design), Marcos Viñals Bassols (Artistic Director)

This large light installation comes to the UK for the first time for Winter Lights at Canary Wharf.

On entering OVO, visitors are surrounded by light and soundscapes. Its dynamic form is a combination of 24 crossed spiral pairs based on the Golden Proportion that is present everywhere in the universe, from infinitely small in the DNA helix to infinitely large in the cyclical movement of planets and galaxies.

Four artists created OVO: Mostafa Hadi and Pol Marchandise (Odeaubois) designed the sculpture; Koert Vermeulen (ACT Lighting Design) conceived the lighting design and Marcos Viñals Bassols (Art Director) shaped the global scenography.

Top image: OVO (Odeaubois) – Lucia Carretero

Location: Montgomery Square

Cathedral of Mirrors

Mads Christensen and Quays Culture

cathedral of mirrors

The twelve columns of light in the Cathedral of Mirrors respond to visitors’ movements thanks to sensors. It means that more people = more light energy, and viewers themselves become part of the expression.

Location: Adams Plaza

Angels of Freedom

Merav Eitan and Gaston Zahr (Ove Collective)

If your angelic qualities have ever been questioned you can regain your wings at the Winter Lights festival. This travelling installation ‘connects people by revealing their beauty irrespective of colour, creed, ethnicity, age or social stats’, because after all, ‘everyone is an angel in their own way’.

Location: Throughout Canary Wharf

On Your Wavelength

Marcus Lyall

canary wharf winter lights

Science meets art with this interactive piece specifically developed for Winter Lights at Canary Wharf. Thanks to an EEG headset you can control the light sculpture and music installation with your mind – how cool is that?

Now for the science: as a person’s ‘thought patterns change, the electrical data from their brain is used to control the music and create intricate light patterns’ illuminating a large-scale light tunnel fitted with over 30,000 LEDs.

Location: Crossrail Place Level -3

Liter of Light

Mick Stephenson

There are plenty of inspiring pieces of art to see at the Canary Wharf Winter Lights festival, but Liter of Light really stands out. Pupils from George Green’s School on the Isle of Dogs co-created this installation which ‘pays homage to the distinctive pyramidal apex of One Canada Square’, whilst highlighting an innovative way of bringing light to places where electricity isn’t an option.

Did you know: a plastic bottle filled with water, a drop of bleach and pushed through a hole in the roof can refract as much sunlight through it as a 55-watt bulb.

Location: Crossrail Place Roof Garden

We can’t wait to see the Canary Wharf Winter Lights festival light up the East London skyline!

  • When: Monday 16th January 2017 – Friday 27th January 2017
  • Where: Throughout Canary Wharf

For more information visit www.canarywharf.com. All images shared with permission.