They normally meet at 44 rue Michel Servet in Villeurbanne to play Scrabble, swap recipes, play music or take a beginners' computer course. Every Tuesday, an association called Les Petits Frères des Pauvres welcomes elderly people who are vulnerable or lonely. "Ensemble 44" is an inter-cultural, inter-age facility located in the Gratte-ciel district of Villeurbanne.
On the first Tuesday in November this year, a different and altogether more original suggestion was on the table, namely taking part in creating the light installation to be shown in Place Rambaud in Lyon's 1st district. Artist and designer Laurent Louyer explained the idea behind his installation – 300 solar-energy lamps are to be hung in the square that will charge during daylight hours and light up once night falls. Each lamp is unique and therefore needed be decorated with drawings, paper butterflies or paper reflecting white light. The busy hands got to work, cutting, writing, drawing and folding.
For Laurent Louyer, who has directed a number of light projects in England, working in participative workshops is quite common practice. It involves meeting those excluded from society and bringing them back into the community by including them in a creative project. Lumières en soi(e) is therefore intended as a double reference to each person's human values and to the history of Lyon and the Canuts. In the end, even if most participants will not be attending future Festivals of Light, they will have played a key role in this year's edition.
List of participative workshops in Lyon and Villeurbanne
Résidence autonomie Louis Pradel
at 146 bvd de la Croix-Rousse, 1er
Les Petits Frères des Pauvres
with the Gratte-Ciel group at 44 rue Michel Servet, Villeurbanne
with the La Ferrandière and Les Buers groups at 51 rue Lafontaine, Villeurbanne
Un Moment de Détente
at 41 rue Maryse Bastié, 8e
at UCLY, 10 place des Archives, 2e
66 Cours Suchet, 2e
Project partner: AG2R La Mondiale