New commemorative light art in Eindhoven

The City of Eindhoven has a new interactive light monument commemorating local heroes of the Second World War and marking 75 years of living in freedom.

Commissioned by the Municipality of Eindhoven, “Loom Light” by Titia Ex is a tribute to Jan Zwartendijk, and many other invisible heroes of resistance from the region of Eindhoven during the Second World War.

The work, with a diameter of approximately 3.50 meters and extending from 4.50 meters to almost 6 meters high, is located on the former NRE energy site in Eindhoven.  It is interactive and responds to the approaching visitor.  

During the day, the monument reflects the sunlight. In the evening, a feast of lights is created referring to the Hanukkiah, in which the light is lit by an invisible hand for eight days. It is a tribute to Jan Zwartendijk and the countlesss invisibles who have engaged to save lives.

This dynamic monument refers to this important history and also moves with our time. “The flowing energy of the monument comes and goes in and out of the earth in a V-shape. The sacrifice of countless people, the deep black period that preceded our freedom,” says the artist, Titia Ex.

Technical innovations and recycling material

One of the world’s largest and most powerful transportable plastic 3D printers was used to create the artwork. The lighting design runs through a parametric model that generates light behavior. This creates a light image that seems to live by dynamically adapting to its surroundings. All other parts are made from 450 kg of recycled plastics, including old CDs.  

One of the challenges in the sculpture is the organic non-repetitive horizontal pattern in the 3D print while the vertical pattern had to continue in the different parts to be assembled. This pattern creates an effect of depth that influences the light shades, which evokes a soft, misty atmosphere.

  • Commissioner: Eindhoven Municipality;
  • Light artist: Titia Ex.
  • 3D print work, metal construction and installation: Colossus Printers, Houthalen (B) & OMD3D, Aalst (B);
  • Light technology: Engineering desk Interactive Matter, Eindhoven.
  • Sponsors: Royal Philips NV; Eindhoven Municipality; Province of North Brabant (Brabant Remembers); High Tech Campus, Eindhoven; Eindhovense Fabrikanten Kring; Aon Commercial Risk Solutions, Health Solutions & Affinity, Eindhoven; Van AKEN Concepts, Architecture & Engineering BV, Eindhoven; Signify, Maarheeze; Brabant-C.

Jan Zwartendijk (1886 – 1976) was director of the Philips office in Kaunas, Lithuania in 1939. When the Second World War broke out, the Dutch government in exile appointed Zwartendijk deputy consul in Lithuania. In that capacity, he saved the lives of Jewish refugees in this country by issuing them visas for Curacao in July 1940.

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Photos: Jan Timmer, Glow; Bart van Overbeeke Photography.

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