London is not short of epic art installations. Spanning a range of mediums, these works can move you in a number of ways – and one of the capital’s newest art installations uses light to transport you back to the beginning of time. Entitled ‘Genesis‘, this high tech light show depicts the story of creation. I checked out the Genesis light show last week and here’s my review.
Half an hour of tranquility and excitement
Swiss Church, the venue hosting Genesis, sits in Covent Garden just one street back from Shaftesbury Avenue; it’s on Endell Street, just off of High Holborn. I chose to visit on a very busy Thursday afternoon, so stepping into the serene Swiss Church from the crowded streets offered lovely respite – and set the tone for the rest of the experience.
The room in which Genesis is displayed is pretty pared back – creating a great canvas for what was about to ensue – though the space did boasts some cool architectural features, like a domed alter. For the show, you can sit upright on chairs, or recline on bean bags in the centre of the room. If you’d rather the latter, I recommend getting there early, because these spots went rather quickly. As the doors shut for the (incredibly prompt) start, we were initially plunged into temporary darkness. However, within a moment, the show began, filling the space with beautiful projections.
For the next half hour – which I’ll be honest, passed by incredibly quickly, as the 270-degree light show completely engulfed me – the walls of the venue are totally transformed with gorgeous, abstract projections, bursting with colour and movement. We had been given a guide upon entry in which we could reference which “day” of creation the projections were representing, or we could simply just lean back and take it all in as a whole. Classical music accompanied the visuals, but at one point, there was quite the bass, so it felt like a cool club night. The soundtrack really helped to build the anticipation.
My favourite sections were the ‘Day 2’ water projections, as the way the blue light danced across the walls was simply hypnotic; and the ‘Day 3 part 2’, as the vibrant flowers and leaves intertwined. It was visually spectacular. At points, it felt like the walls were coming towards me as was the high tech nature of the projections.
Although this light show has appeared in various cities, the team behind it recreates the projections in each city, so it specifically fits the dimensions of the building in which it is being showcased. This attention to detail was clear, as shapes danced across specific pillars and curves at the Swiss Church.
Overall, the Genesis light show gets a great review from me – although it is short, it is the perfect bite-sized bliss away from London’s frenetic energy: I forgot I was in the heart of the West End.
Whether you’re looking for a quick break between shopping, half an hour of downtime during the summer holidays, or simply something unique to visit on your way home, you can’t go wrong with slipping into the Swiss Church for a showing of Genesis. Pre-booking is recommended; tickets are available online.