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Commission for Aarhus 2017 – European Capital of Culture

Tine Bech’s home town Aarhus in Denmark has been appointed European Capital of Culture in 2017 and her studio has been commissioned to create an interactive light installation that spans two cities – Aarhus and London, by the Association Hidden Places.

We Believe an interactive and playable cities light project and explores how public spaces can invite participation and create connections between people. The project curated and arranged by the Aarhus European Capital of Culture 2017 project stakeholder the Association Hidden Places in partnership with the Royal Danish Embassy in LondonAarhus City Hall and Karolinegaarden.

Audience will illuminate Aarhus City Hall Tower and the Danish Embassy in London from a control room. Using the aesthetics and theatre of the control room we will create an interactive ‘playable’ room on the rooftop of Aarhus’s Karolinegaarden. From there, participants will control individual light sections directed on to both buildings, using a series of interactive devices (turn dials, press buttons and more), thereby creating a 3D playable structure whereby the two buildings are involved in a symbolic conversation as the audiences interact.

The more people that play, the more alive the buildings become. A webcam will be placed at Aarhus City Hall and at the Danish Embassy thereby enabling participants and audiences to follow the interaction on screens in the control room and online. Aarhus City Tower is also visible from the terrace where the control room is located.

We Believe connects two cities through interactive art, light and participation, and perfectly encapsulates European collaboration and cultural exchange. The buildings are power structures, namely Aarhus City Council and Denmark’s diplomatic mission in England. The conceptual creation and aesthetics of the control room are essential to the project, exemplifying its theme of democracy and citizen creative participation, and the audience’s interactions are, therefore, at the heart of the project.
The title European Capital of Culture (ECOC) represents one of the most prestigious and prominent cultural events in Europe. Every year two EU countries are appointed as host countries for the European Capital of Culture. Capital of Culture Aarhus 2017 is supported by Central Denmark Region and all the municipalities in the region. It is deeply rooted in strong regional cooperation across the entire region.

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