Shadows and Light Christmas experience
Join us for an all-new after-dark experience this Christmas, as Eden is transformed into an ever-changing landscape of shadows and light.
This activity is part of:
An immersive light spectacular
Playful light sculptures
Your journey begins on the viewing platform where pockets of glowing colour, dancing lights, and festive music beckon you down towards the Biomes.
Discover playful and interactive light sculptures which react to your touch, and watch as giant lights ripple and simmer across the slopes of the Outdoor Gardens.
Step into the Rainforest Biome to explore different tropical zones of colour and light, shifting and changing in reaction to tropical weather patterns. Peep into the twinkling Malaysian hut to see shimmering jars with a magical secret, and hear festive stories from the past, present and future.
'Absolutely fabulous evening experience. Extremely atmospheric and would recommend to everyone.'
A musical garden by night
Continue on to the Mediterranean Biome where live music and impromptu performance set the tempo. Here you can wander through a glowing laser forest, and explore an Antarctic garden by night, glittering with frost and ice.
Stunning light spectacle
Your journey ends in the Core, home to Invisible Worlds, where colour, lights and music combine in a festive celebration – and create a stunning backdrop to the awe-inspiring sculpture, Infinity Blue.
As featured in the UK’s best places for Christmas this winter by Daily Mail, Telegraph and i newspaper, and as shown in The Guardian Gallery.
'The kids absolutely loved it.'
Dates and times this Christmas holidays
The final few days of Shadows and Light take place between 5pm and 8pm 27-30 December.
It's free with Eden admission (or if you have a Pass or Membership) and no booking is required. Part of Christmas at Eden, until 30 December.
Most of the light installations are inside our Biomes, so you can enjoy the experience in poor weather.
Live music performances
Every night of Shadows and Light, Big Bang Brass will perform classic Christmas hits from the Great American Songbook, as well as some modern classics with jazzed- and funked-up arrangements. Performances will be in the Outdoor Gardens at 5.30pm, 6.30pm and 7.30pm.
Each evening of Shadows and Light will also include performances by one of the following three artists in the Mediterranean Biome at 5pm, 6pm and 7pm:
- The Opera Singers will perform a variety of winter and Christmas songs from Puccini to Irving Berlin and everywhere in between.
- The Cornwall Quartet are a string quartet that will perform an array of music, from well-known classical pieces to covers of pop, rock, jazz, folk and film music.
- The Simon Latarche Duo will perform a selection of Christmas-themed swing and bossa nova melodies, including traditional carols and more recent festive tunes.
'Simply gorgeous. We've got all the tingles!'
About the artworks
Light Wave, 2018
The light is slowly twinkling; it shines brightly and then fades. The light changes colour and the colour ripples outward to the surrounding trees; it will finally reach the trees and the rock face.
Light and sound
Explore this magical multi-sensory sculpture that engages sight, sound and touch. Wonder while you wander amongst these magnificent individual yet interlinked columns of colour, as you join others in this spontaneous music making experience. Together creating everchanging patterns of light and audio in this brand new ethereal environment.
Renegade & Silent Studios
‘Echoes' The Weather-Makers, 2018
Light and sound
The Rainforest Biome is filled with mist and haze. Saturated coloured light creates an environment where visitors find their perception saturated and transformed by the colourful fog.
The coloured light and deconstructed choral soundscape are manipulated by an algorithm that uses the weather data from four real-world rainforests to represent a year-in-the-life of these incredible Weather Makers. With the environment in a continual state of flux, the transient light, colour and mist mimic the weather conditions at the rainforest locations. Precipitation, temperature, humidity, wind speed and cloud cover all influence the light and the soundscape.
Jam Jar Fairies, 2014
The sculptural installation Jam Jar Fairies, which was originally commissioned and developed for the Royal Shakespeare Company, is a magical installation using film projections and sound to create a beautiful display of fairies that have been trapped in jam jars and are trying to escape their glass cages.
Wishing Beacon, 2018
A Christmas wishing beacon occupies the centre of the Biome, encouraging visitors to think about Christmas and their wishes for the future.
Marshmallow Laser Feast
'Forest' is a large interactive musical laser installation. Commissioned by and premiered at the STRP Biennale in Eindhoven, this giant interactive forest covers almost 450 square metres and is composed of over 150 musical 'trees' made of rods and lasers. The audience can freely explore the space, physically tapping, shaking, plucking, and vibrating the trees to trigger sounds and lasers. Due to the natural springiness of the material, interacting with the trees causes them to swing and oscillate, creating vibrating patterns of light and sound. Each tree is tuned to a specific tone, creating harmonious sounds spatialized and played through a powerful surround sound setup.
Video projections and sound
See the Australia and South Africa zones of the Mediterranean Biome as never before, as a subsurface layer of permafrost permeates through the trees creating a harsh but beautiful winterscape – but also highlighting the impact of climate change.
At almost 9 metres tall, Infinity Blue by Studio Swine is the centrepiece to the Christmas installations for 2018. Here, Silent Studios re-appropriate the sculpture by adding a 12-piece ‘choir’ made from loudspeakers circling Infinity Blue. Drawing from the iconic traditional British folk Christmas carol ‘The Holly and the Ivy’ a sound bed of choral vocal parts and an elemental winter soundscape is divided and played through 12 individual speaker sculptures, immersing guests in an elaborate celebration of life at the darkest time of the year, when it may seem like spring will never return.
This master soundscape is deconstructed and presented throughout the site in various playful light and sound installations.
About the artists
Silent Studios and Renegade have together created a body of work spanning 15 years. Ranging from the ethereal to the visceral, their collaborations have seen them immerse the public in light, picture and sound, in venues ranging from galleries, stadiums and theatres to tunnels and catwalks.
Illumaphonium are master interactive sound and light artists, who create large-scale interactive sonic installations featuring cutting-edge lighting and sensor technologies.
Marshmallow Laser Feast work in the liminal space between art, science and technology, creating immersive experiences that expand perception and explore our connection to the natural world. Their works combine installation, live performance and VR, informed as much by playfulness, as research.
Davy and Kristin McGuire’s bold and innovative work combines mesmerising theatricality with technical wizardry and exquisite craftsmanship. Orchestrating elaborate and exquisite scenes out of anything from paper and wood to glass and fabric, the breadth of their work is limited only by their imaginations.
Shadows and Light creative direction and curation by Nick Gray (Renegade) and Nathan Prince (Silent Studios).