The Fête des Lumières (« festival of light ») is a popular, and prestigious, annual event, when millions of visitors are immersed in a wondrous, fairytale weekend. It was in 2014 that Ilex took part in it for the first time, with the decor and illumination of an iconic square, Place Sathonay.

Let there be dancing…         

We treated Place Sathonay as a ballroom. Its simple geometrical form recalls a dance floor, and it is ringed by chestnut trees whose slim, supple branches, in winter, form a mysterious corps de ballet dancing in the wind.

and listening…

We wanted to make the square tell the story of the dancing trees. And dressing them in tutus made the image clear. We laid down a dance floor, added music and bathed the scene in light. Technically, the ambiance was determined by the musical tempo. Colour, movement and intensity sustained the flights of orchestral fancy, creating sensorial immersion.

A participative installation

The installation was an invitation to take over the square – to dance, to play, to spin round on the platform. People became actors in a tableau vivant, and adopted the narrative. The space was absolutely public. It was a world to be inhabited; a world of dreams; a world of landscape and light, where the everyday public space was sublimated and re-enchanted, for just a few nights…




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Ball(et)room, Lyon
5–8 December 2014
Client: Ville de Lyon
Artistic direction: Ilex paysage urbanisme – Guerric Péré, Aurélie Le Gougouec, Clothilde Krebs, Jean-Claude Durual
Technical direction: GL Events Audiovisual – Frédéric Fuentes, Alexandre Trapon, Frédéric Viricel, Fabien Marie-Olive
Costumes: Nadine Chabannier
Sound engineer: Quentin Durual
Songs: Angelina Pelluet
Mission: an artistic programme for the Fête des Lumières (design and production)