Press release - For immediate distribution

Montreal, October 13, 2015 – The Quartier des Spectacles Partnership is pleased to announce the installation that will take over the Place des Festivals this coming winter for the sixth annual edition of Luminothérapie, from December 10, 2015 to January 31, 2016. The work is called Impulse a participatory creation by the Toronto-based firm Lateral Office, and CS Design, in collaboration with EGP Group, both from Montreal.

The work’s 30 seesaws, producing sound and light as people bounce up and down on them, will turn the Place des Festivals into a vast interactive playground. Fulfilling the mandate to create a unified Luminothérapie concept, as well as a complementary to the large-scale installation, the creative consortium will also produce video projections for the nine permanent projection sites in the Quartier des Spectacles. Two Montreal-based artists will be responsible for the projections: Maotik and Irregular, with soundtracks for the projections and for the Place des Festivals by Toronto-based artist Mitchell Akiyama.

Impulse won over the jury with its intuitive participatory nature, appealing to a wide audience. The installation covers all of Place des Festivals, using the space in a harmonious way. It produces a strong visual impact, and it invites to be active in winter. The video projections, meanwhile, are more abstract and complement the experience of playing on the seesaws in the Place des Festivals, which the jury members saw as a daring idea,” explains Gabriel Poirier-Galarneau, chair of the Luminothérapie 2015 jury.

Proposals were required to draw inspiration from winter and the specific characteristics of the site. They also had to offer visitors a meaningful sound-and-light experience day or night, be meaningful in both content and artistic approach, and encourage people of all ages to participate.


Impulse is an interactive work comprising seesaws of various sizes, with lighting and sound. To activate them, one person sits down on each end. The seesaws, fitted with LED lights and speakers, then produce a series of beautiful sounds. The intensity of the light varies as the board’s angle changes.

The installation and its streamlined design will delight children and adults as they play with the sounds and lighting effects it produces, filling the Place des Festivals with a dance of sounds and lights, bringing joy and warmth to the winter’s cold, short days and dark nights.

With their motion and hypnotic rhythms, the architectural video projections will echo the seesaws in the Place des Festivals. Playing with the ideas of balance and unbalance, symmetry and asymmetry, tension and harmony, the projections, accompanied by original soundtracks, will enhance the primary work.


Founded in 2003 by Lola Sheppard and Mason White, Lateral Office is a Toronto-based experimental design firm that operates at the intersection of architecture, landscape architecture and urbanism. The studio sees architecture as a response to complex, urgent questions in the built environment, engaging in the wider context and climate of a project – social, ecological or political. The firm’s recent work and research focuses on powerful design relationships between the public realm, infrastructure and the environment.


CS Design was founded in 2008 by Conor Sampson. A wide array of architecture, landscape architecture and engineering firms have hired the firm to design lighting for parks, heritage buildings, monuments and artworks. CS Design’s areas of expertise include electric lighting and programmable control specification, custom fixture design, daylighting in buildings and public spaces, and energy efficiency.


Egli Gallaccio Palanca is an engineering consulting firm in Montreal. Thomas Egli is a civil engineer and president of EGP Group. He worked on numerous large-scale projects and is a professor of civil engineering at McGill University.


Mathieu Le Sourd (Maotik) is a Montreal-based digital artist who creates immersive multimedia environments and generative visuals. His work has recently been presented in festivals around the world such as Live Cinema in Rio, the Plums Festival in Moscow, Visiones in Lima, the MUTEK Festival in Barcelona and BFIDigital Québec in London.


Iregular is a Montreal-based studio founded in 2010 by visual artist Daniel Iregui. Working at the intersection of art and technology, the studio approaches design using a code-driven, real-time mindset. As creators of audio-visual experiences for installations and websites, Iregular’s work combines geometry, typography, light and sound with software, mathematics and algorithms. The result: systems with infinite possibilities, making every instant in each project unique.


Mitchell Akiyama is a Toronto-based composer, artist and scholar. He has released over ten records on such labels as Raster Noton, Sub Rosa and Alien8, in addition to works on his own imprint, Intr.version Records. He has scored numerous films and dance performances. Akiyama has received commissions from, among others, the Akousma Festivals and the Nouvel Orchestre D’aujourd’hui. He has performed across Europe, Japan, Australia and North America in concert halls, clubs, art galleries, fallout bunkers and festivals including Sonar, Mutek and Send + Receive.


Luminothérapie is Quebec’s largest competition for temporary installations. Its mission is to present an original interactive winter experience for visitors to the Quartier des Spectacles and to stimulate creative activity in urban installations and digital art. Each proposal is reviewed using criteria detailed in the Competition Rules. This year, 38 proposals were submitted and five finalist teams emerged from the first round of the competition.

The total production budget is $300,000, of which $250,000 is earmarked for the primary work presented in the Place des Festivals, with the remaining $50,000 allocated to the production of the nine video projections.

The finalists
In addition to the Lateral Office and CS Design team, the finalists were:

To learn more and see the finalists’ proposals:

The jury
The finalists were selected after submitting proposals anonymously, in order to ensure transparency and openness to new talent. The winning team was selected after the finalists’ remunerated presentations to the jury. The jury for both rounds was:

  • Marc-André Carignan, urban design and architecture journalist
  • Mikaël Charpin, Assistant Director and Luminous Pathway manager, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership
  • Pascale Daigle, Director of Programming, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership
  • Pierre Fortin, Executive Director, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership
  • Émilie F. Grenier, narrative experiences designer
  • Benoît Lemieux, Director of Operations and Luminous Pathway, Quartier des Spectacles Partnership
  • Gabriel Poirier-Galarneau, multimedia producer. Jury chair
  • Judith Portier, environmental designer
  • Catherine Turp, Creative Director, Moment Factory


Montreal is part of UNESCO’s international Creative Cities Network in the Cities of Design category. The Network includes 69 cities in 32 countries. It helps creators in member cities share their experiences, while promoting the international exchange of best practices and knowledge.

The Ville de Montréal’s Bureau du design works with the Quartier des Spectacles Partnership on preparing and running this annual competition. Such competitions are among the many commitments taken on by the city and the partners in Action Plan 2007-2017 – Montréal, Cultural Metropolis, which aims to promote excellence in design and architecture while affirming Montreal’s status as a UNESCO City of Design.


The Quartier des Spectacles is Montreal’s cultural heart, boasting North America’s most concentrated and diverse group of cultural venues. The district is the year-round host to countless festivals and events, many of which include free outdoor shows and activities. The Quartier also hosts innovative urban installations involving cutting-edge lighting design, immersive environments or interactive digital spaces. Thanks to the Place des Festivals and the world’s most extensive set of architectural video projection facilities used exclusively for presenting artistic content, the Quartier des Spectacles is an extraordinary creative space for designers. The Quartier des Spectacles is an international showcase for new multimedia technology, making Montreal a global leader in the urban exhibition of digital content. For more information, visit

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