Vectorial Elevation   DUBLIN, 22/4 - 3/5, 2004
 Visit previous versions of the project:

As of April 22, 2004, anyone who logs onto the website will be able to design enormous light sculptures in the sky of Dublin. The website will have a 3D virtual model of the city where participants can make a light design using 22 robotic searchlights placed around O’Connell Street. As submissions arrive from the Internet, every fifteen seconds a new pattern will be displayed in the sky. With 154,000 watts of power, the beams of light will be visible from a distance of 15 kilometres. Participants’ names and dedications will be shown on a large screen in the street and on personal web pages that will be made automatically for each design. The website will also present a live broadcast from four video cameras placed around the city centre so that remote viewers can see the current state of the installation.

“Vectorial Elevation” is the work of the Mexican-Canadian artist Rafael Lozano-Hemmer, who is assisted by a dozen programmers, designers and technicians from five countries. Lozano-Hemmer’s speciality, which he calls “relational architecture”, aims to transform urban spaces with interactive technologies that allow the public to form an integral part of the artwork. The project intends to fold the virtual space of the Internet with the real space of the city to create what he calls an "anti-monument": "if people don't participate and add their own input the project does not exist".

"Vectorial Elevation" was presented for the first time in the Zócalo Square in Mexico City, for the Millennium celebrations. More than 800,000 people from 89 countries visited the website (69% from Mexico), and millions saw the designs in the city. In spring of 2002, the project was installed in the Basque capital city of Vitoria, to coincide with the opening of the Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, Artium. For that edition, over 300,000 people from 65 countries (47% from Spain) visited the site. In the fall of 2003, the piece transformed the Place Bellecour in Lyon, for the UN's World Summit of Cities. In seven nights the project was visited by over 600,000 people (81% from France) with over 6.5 million web pages served. For Dublin it is expected that the website will reach over one million visitors.

"Vectorial Elevation" received the Golden Nica award in 2001, the oldest and most prestigious electronic art award in the world, given by the Ars Electronica festival and ORF TV in Austria. The project also received an SFMOMA Webby distinction in San Francisco, an Excellence Prize at the CG Arts Festival in Tokyo and a Trophée des Lumières in Lyon.

The piece will be in operation every night from April 22 to May 3, 2004 from dusk to dawn.

This piece is funded by the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism for Ireland 2004 Presidency of the European Union.


Siobhan Colgan
Press Relations Manager - Cultural Programme
Ireland 2004 Presidency of the European Union
Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism
Frederick Buildings
South Frederick Street
Dublin 2

Tel 353 1 631 3936
Fax 353 1 631 3956
Mobile 353 87 7992330



Catalogues of high resolution images for downloading (300 points per inch drum-scans):

Vectorial Elevation, Mexico version:

Vectorial Elevation, Spain version:

Vectorial Elevation, France version:

Works by Rafael Lozano-Hemmer:

To download an image:

1. Visit a catalogue by entering one of the web addresses above in Explorer, Netscape or Safari.

2. Click on the miniature version of the image that you would like to download, this will load the large high resolution version in your browser.

3. Once the high resolution image has loaded save it to your hard drive. You may do this by dragging the image off the web page, by right clicking with a two button mouse on the image and selecting "save image" from the pop-up menu, or in Macs by control clicking and selecting "download image to disk" from the pop-up menu.



Vectorial Elevation, Relational Architecture No. 4

Rafael Lozano-Hemmer (Mexican-Canadian). Biography and Information at his web site

O'Connell Street, Dublin, Ireland

Via the web site

The piece will be live between April 22 and May 3, 2004, every evening from dusk to dawn. Every fifteen seconds a submitted light sculpture will be displayed over O’Connell Street.

To celebrate the joining of ten new countries into the European Union. For more information on the celebrations, please visit:

Twenty-two 7kW robotic searchlights will be placed on the rooftops of buildings around O'Connell Street. The light beams will be visible at a distance of 15 kilometres.

The interface is made with Java and Linux so that this work can be viewed with any browser and any computer platform, without the need for plug-ins or special software.

Exhibition history:
Millennium celebrations, Zócalo Square, Mexico City, Mexico 1999-2000
Opening of the Basque Museum of Contemporary Art, Vitoria, Spain 2002
Fête des lumières, UN World Summit of Cities, Lyon, France 2003.

Producers in Ireland:
St. Patrick's Festival on behalf of the Cultural Programme of Ireland 2004 Presidency of the European Union.

This piece is funded by the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism for Ireland 2004 Presidency of the European Union.


Visit previous versions of the project:

Mexico 1999 - Spain 2002 - France 2003