May 172012

A fascinating light show last weekend at the Tokyo Hotaru festival where Panasonic provided 100,000 solar powered LED lights to imitate fireflies floating down the Sumida River in the center of Tokyo. Lighting up on impact with water, the small lights (referred to as “Prayer Stars”) were later recovered downstream through the use of nets.

With all due respect to my many friends in Chicago, this surely beats dying the water of the Chicago river green on St. Patrick’s Day.  And as the technology becomes cheaper, smaller and more disposable, it becomes possible to undertake large-scale temporary projects like this. In a way, it is our effort to play with light just as people in the Middle Ages created their own narratives through sunlight and glass in the Gothic cathedrals. Theirs was more permanent, though the buildings had an ephemeral quality in the interplay of light and shadow. Our projects are entirely transitory, though they have an element of permanence in that they get recorded through digital photographs. Perhaps this is most appropriate for a digital world where everything solid seems capable of being transformed into the ephemeral and yet every digital activity leaves a trace that lingers long after the artifact has been dismantled (or deleted).

Two images below from the Creators Project website. From the ground, the Sumida river appears as ribbons of light trailing off into the distance; from the air, it is as if there is an electronic current coursing its way through downtown Tokyo. Enjoy.

tokyo hotaru festival - Sumida River


tokyo hotaru festival - Sumida River from above

Tokyo Hotaru Festival - Sumida River from above

  11 Responses to “The Ephemeral Light Show – 100,000 LED Lights on Tokyo’s Sumida River”

  1. This excellent website truly has all the info I needed concerning this subject and
    didn’t know who to ask.

    My weblog ed treatment drugs

  2. Hello, just wanted to tell you, I enjoyed this post.
    It was inspiring. Keep on posting!

    my webpage :: how to buy cialis online from canada

  3. Hey there this is kinda off off topic but I was wondering if blogs use WYSIWYG
    editors or if you have to manually code with HTML.
    I’m starting a blog soon but have no coding skills so I wanted to
    get gujdance from someone with experience. Any hel would be enormouysly appreciated!

    Here iis my web page; Clash Of Clans Astuce Pour Gemmes

  4. If some one desires expert view about blogging after that i propose him/her to pay a quick
    visit this web site, Keep up the nice job.

    Feel free to visit my blog – canadian drug prices

  5. Heya excellent website! Does running a blog similar to this require a lot of work?
    I have no knowledge of coding however I had been hoping to start my own blog in the near future.
    Anyways, should you have any suggestions or tips
    for new blog owners please share. I understand this is off
    subject but I simply had to ask. Cheers!

    Also visit my homepage – canadian cialis

  6. Thanks very interesting blog!

    Feel free to surf to my page – cialis in canada

  7. White cedar is the most popular and people generally prefer cedar log siding.
    Booth has served the purpose of providing temporary
    housing for workers and employees. created a national group of
    show site to display the Uk Log Cabins range.

  8. Does your blog have a contact page?I’m having a tough time locating it but, I’d like to
    shoot you an email. I’ve got some creative ideas for your blog you might be interested in hearing.
    Either way, great website and I look forward to seeing it groiw over time.

  9. It does not matter there they are giving option to download files or not.
    I caught him once sitting in front of his Tv checking thee
    winning. you believe”, “it is done unio you as you believe”, “be it done.

  10. I think the admin of this web page is really working hard for
    his web page, because here every data is quality based data.

  11. Thanks for the auspicious writeup. It in truth was once
    a entertainment account it. Look advanced to more delivered agreeable from you!
    However, how can we be in contact?

 Leave a Reply

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>