PHARUS – inspiration to an inner journey
Installation of sounds, images and light on November 8, 10 and 11, 2018 at the Mariendom in Velbert-Neviges
In 2018, the Mariendom in Neviges, built by Gottfried Böhm, celebrated its 50th anniversary. The artistic highlight of the jubilee celebrations was the performance of the media installation PHARUS by the Düsseldorf artist group «Area Composer« in cooperation with »Lichtkultur« from Göttingen.
Nearly 2.000 people have experienced PHARUS. All three days were sold out and the response was overwhelming. PHARUS was described in the German newspaper WAZ (Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung) as a »breathtaking art project« and »unbelievably harmonious symphony of colors, light and sounds … that leaves plenty of room for own thoughts and emotions« (read article in German). »A lighthouse in the Mariendom« headlined the Westdeutsche Zeitung WZ (read article in German).
Take a look at the trailer (3 minutes):
Staging and perception
With the staging of PHARUS at the Mariendom Neviges, visual art, sound art, light art and digital technology entered into an exciting dialogue with epoch-making architecture. The approximately 700 square meter concrete wall of the sanctuary became a powerful projection screen for the luminous, slowly merging images of Peter Hölscher. With the help of a mapping technology, the images were tailored precisely to the angled, folded architecture of the wall, so that it seemed to detach from the building and float freely in the room. The soundtrack, composed by Ronald Gaube, was recorded via a multi-channel surround sound system, which made the diverse sound effects throughout the church space vividly tangible. In the last part of the church organ was used and played – driven by a midi interface – the pre-programmed composition.
Uta von Schenck and Paul Friedel from »Lichtkultur« accompanied the installation with a finely tuned light dramaturgy. The church windows were illuminated in different colors and intensities from the outside and corresponded in this way with the pictures on the sanctuary wall. In addition, floodlights were used throughout the church, filling the vaulted ceiling, galleries, side and sacrament chapels with light and color.
The result is a total work of art that uniquely sets the scene of the entire architecture of the Mariendom. The audience and listeners could experience the cathedral in a completely new way. Because unlike media installations often common, they were not flooded with hectic images and quick cuts. On the contrary. PHARUS fascinated by slowness and took the visitors on a contemplative journey that slowed down and gave time for a meditative experience. So they could fully immerse themselves in the installation and develop from their impressions and associations a personal relationship with this historically and spiritually significant place.
For the realization of PHARUS state-of-the-art technology was used, which was awarded, delivered and installed by »team technik« from Recklinghausen as well as by the Munich-based company »Scheinwurf«. High-profile video, sound and lighting experts set up the technology and drove the installation highly professionally on the three days of the event. Responsible for the overall technical advice and video mapping was »MXWendler«from Weimar. The sound system as well as the overall control were taken over by Peter Kanngießer from Wuppertal.
PHARUS (lat. Lighthouse) is a work of the artist group »Area Composer«, consisting of Peter Hölscher (composition, photography), Ronald Gaube (composition, music) and Dorothee Pilavas (art projectress). With 5.000 individual photos in long exposure and 40 hours of sound recording, the Area Composer captured the shapes, colors, sounds and sounds inside and in the immediate vicinity of the dome and woven it into a unique composition of images and sound, specifically to the dimensions of around 700 square meters large altar wall was cut to size.
The media installation has a total duration of 40 minutes and shows four stages of a trip or pilgrimage to the Mariendom:
What is left of PHARUS?
Instant 7:15 min. from »Epiphany«
PHARUS patron Prof. dr. Andreas Pinkwart:
»The Mariendom bathed in new light«