Interactive light art “Light Well”
in Lahti, Finland

Interactivity and historical findings are the key elements of the lighting plan in new market square in the city of Lahti, Finland. Lighting & industrial designer Reija Pasanen and architect Marjut Kauppinen have created the lighting concept with the latest technology but with a traditional twist.


Our team was chosen through an invitational lighting design competition autumn 2013. There were four participants, and our idea appealed to the City of Lahti jury most. We considered – as well as the jury – that the history of Lahti is one main source of inspiration for the lighting concept. The main reason to re-build the old market square was the need for underground parking space, that is now realized under the square. In summer 2013 City of Lahti made archaeological research on the parking lot site. They found out that on the place of today´s market square there had been several small houses, courtyards and water wells some 150 years ago and even sooner.


Wells have always been important places for interacting with other people and it inspired our idea for the interactive art piece Light Well. It is a meeting point and the place to just hang out, no need to buy anything or to be effective.


The Light Well is only one part of the market square lighting, but of course, the most interesting item for the public. The Light Well has been inspired by the old wells found from the market square’s excavations. The light installation consist of a granite platform and a luminaire which is the shape of a traditional draw well. On the top of the granite platform there is a round glass surface with historical map of the market place of Lahti and interactive lighting installation.


Movement-sensitive lighting reminds of water in cyan and blue colors. Lighting installation invites people of all ages to step on it and find out how the white waves are following your steps and start radiate from your movements. The Light Well is a new experiential meeting place and a stage for small-scale events for residents and visitors in the heart of the city of Lahti.


The ambient general lighting enhances mainly the walkways across the square, from south to north and from east to west. All the iGuzzini Lavinia luminaires use ledlamps and custom made lighting poles are manufactured by Tehomet. The center of the square is a part of a greater axe that links the church by architect Alvar Aalto to the town hall by architect Eliel Saarinen. On this central axe on the square there in another lighting thrill: traces of shoes and horse shoes on the pavement. Martin profile projectors and interactive lighting systems are organized to the site by Studiotec.



Design team of the interactive Lahti Light Well

Concept idea and design: Reija Pasanen (STUDIO LUX NOVA)
Technical implementation: Tapio Järvinen (Studiotec)
Interactive content: Mitja Prelovšek & David Žalik (The Invisible)

Lighting designers of the market square in Lahti / Finland

Lighting design: Reija Pasanen (STUDIO LUX NOVA) and
Marjut Kauppinen (Architect Office Marjut Kauppinen Ltd)
Electrical planning: Teuvo Hopponen and Tony Nelin (SEU)

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