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5 Minutes with Light Artist Ross Ashton

Tuesday 6 February 2018

Above: Senate House from the 2017 Festival.

Ross Ashton has created two installations for this year's e-Luminate Festival, 'Night at the Museum' at the Fitzwilliam Museum and 'I See' at Senate House. With less than a week to go until this year's Festival opens we discover the inspiration behind his two pieces and what he enjoys about being a light artist. 

How long have you been working within the lighting industry and creating your amazing light installations?

I started out in Architectural Projection over 25 years ago. I was lucky enough to be offered a place in France where the concept of the Son et Lumiere was invented. Even then in the late 80's many towns would hold light festivals in the summer.

What inspired you to create this specific installation?

I have been working with Professor Hannah Smithson at Pembroke College Oxford. he is studying how human perception works. This got us talking about visual illusions, and I thought it would be interesting to see if we could combine optical illusions with large scale projection. This is very much an experimental work.

Do you have a favourite city or place to create a light installation?

No. I like to think I can create for anywhere. I've produced works all over the world on buildings as diverse as castles, palaces, skyscrapers at one end of the scale and local shops and churches at the other.

What does the average day for a light artist entail?

I wouldn't know what that meant. Every day is different and that what I love about what I do.

If you could give one piece of advice to anyone looking to become a light artist what would it be?

I was lucky that I was offered a massive opportunity to work in France. I guess my advice would be to try and recognise the opportunities when they come a long and don't let them slip by. 


To find out more about Ross' installations click HERE for 'Night at the Museum' and HERE for 'I See'. To discover more about all the events at this year's festival click HERE