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Giant Lampshades Create Spectacular Urban Lighting Installation


Currently on Cartier Avenue in Quebec City, 34 giant backlit lampshades, decorated with selected works by Alfred Pellan and Fernand Leduc from the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, are hanging over the street. The installation is an original concept by Lightemotion, the lighting design firm that illuminates building façades and interiors in Europe, North America, Asia and Oceania.


Aiming to capture the identity of Cartier Avenue, Lightemotion sought a lighting concept that could express the warmth of a neighbourhood life characterized by a strong community spirit. At the same time, the installation needed to be spectacular enough to be an event in itself.


The city’s major museum of fine arts, the Musée national des beaux-arts du Québec, helped turn the 34 lampshades into a temporary outdoor art gallery. The museum selected works by Alfred Pellan and Fernand Leduc from its permanent collection and handled artistic direction for their reproduction on the giant lighting fixtures.


While the winter exhibition is designed to be temporary (it is scheduled to continue until the end of March), Lightemotion’s creation has the advantage of being flexible. The works mounted on the shades can be easily replaced to feature a different artist or theme every year. That capability suggests a vast range of possibilities for the system of displaying suspended backlit materials, whether it be art, urban-art competition entries, concert posters or images of different aspects of neighbourhood life.

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all images © PATRICK MEVEL