Japonismes 2018 - Les lumières du Japon habillent la Tour Eiffel by Motoko Ishii & Akari-Lisa Ishii
Diplomatic Relations between France and Japan
As one of the official events and highlight of Japonismes 2018 (https://japonismes.org/en), a collaboration of France and Japan based on an agreement between the two countries, Japan will be adopted as the theme for the first time and a special light-up of the Eiffel Tower embodying Japonismes will be carried out.
SHOW: DESIGN CONCEPT
The special light-up comprises two programs with a combined running time of 10 minutes; the programs
Two evenings (September 13 and 14, 2018) - very rare for an event of this type.
A special light-up on the Eiffel Tower structure expresses the beauty of Japan, creating a light-art work by
wrapping the tower with images of Japan’s culture on this Parisian landmark.
Based on an original scenario, an original soundtrack is created for the theme of Japan, increasing the synergy between light and sound.
This sound and light show is divided into two parts:
PROGRAM 1 LIGHT PERFORMANCE
Theme: Liberty, Beauty, Diversity
More than 200 years have passed since the French Revolution with its slogan of republican democracy ”LIBERTÉ (Liberty)—EGALITÉ (Equality)—FRATERNITÉ (Fraternity).” Considering the common direction that France and Japan are headed in today, three important themes come to mind. Both countries are democracies and both love art, also the message of light transmitted from the Eiffel Tower expressing our desire to continue to lead a diverse and peaceful world is our theme. Thus, our light performance is composed of the following features.
In French, Japan is also known as LE PAYS DU SOLEIL LEVANT (the country of the rising sun). The symbolism of the sun on the Japanese flag, or Hinomaru, and the simple but strong graphism are an exotic artistic expression which has been highly regarded in France and other countries since the 19th century. It symbolizes the longing and sacredness of pure white that is deeply rooted in the Japanese aesthetic sense. The crimson sun gradually rising against a white background is a dynamic presentation. This scene, called “Tower of the Rising Sun,” is part of the opening.
Development － Liberty
The theme of “Liberty” is expressed by two colored lights and intersecting beams symbolizing the freedom of exchange and dialogue between the countries, and light patterns creating the image of interwoven friendship. The world’s latest special equipment is used to develop a dynamic fabric of light on the Eiffel Tower, heightening the dramatic effect of the production.
Turning point － Beauty
Continuing, for the section on the theme “Beauty” Japan’s National-Treasure class works were specially selected from the Tokyo National Museum’s collection and images projected on the tower’s west face using a laser projection system developed in Japan. In addition, light projections expressing Japan’s traditional beauty motif, “Setsugekka” (Snow, Moon, Flowers), featuring a dignified Mt. Fuji, covered with snow the moon over waves in the sea and cherry blossoms in full bloom, bring the performance to a climax.
Conclusion － Diversity
In “Diversity,” the final section, lights in various colors and patterns paint the Eiffel Tower in this contemporary performance. The various patterns and light beams move with the music, making the Eiffel Tower itself seem to dance, heightening the impact of the performance. It is a message of light telling the world that Japan and France are aiming for a future open to the diversity.
PROGRAM 2 SYMBOLIC IMAGE
Using a gold background is a symbolic technique in Japanese art expression. Gold is used in the light-up of the Eiffel Tower to symbolize Japan, used to be called the “golden country.” Floodlights emitting gold-colored light are newly developed in Japan for this event.
Against that background, the image of Korin Ogata’s Kakitsubata-zu byobu (Irises Painted on a Folding Screen), a National Treasure in the Nezu Museum collection, is projected (National Treasure Irises screens by Ogata Kōrin, 18th century, Edo period, Nezu Museum). Applied in a mapping projection for the first time in the world, this masterpiece is projected on the Eiffel Tower like a slowly drifting poetic expression.ational.
As this picture is very long and low, we will move it gently from right to left so that it can be appreciated in its entirety.