5 – The north doorway of Chartres Cathedral
About the scenographies
Artistic design: Spectaculaires, Les Allumeurs d'Images – Franck Marty and Benoît Quero
“When the Lighters become Illuminators.”
The scenography of the doorway of the cathedral, renewed one year after that of the royal doorway had to take account of its “big sister” to avoid the danger of duplication. The much more intimate area of the site, with its closeness, the closed configuration of the monument and the delicacy of the statuary, recently renovated, themselves provided the objective of this illumination.
The contours are edged in white light with a blue tint, and then the rich medieval colour palette transforms the doorway into an illustration as of a manuscript, picking out the architectural lines, the arches and the smallest of details. The statues come to life; the drapes of their clothes are lite up, their jewels glisten, their faces breathe life again.
When night falls, the visitor or walker lets himself be transported by his nocturnal mood, towards the north portal of Chartres Cathedral of Notre-Dame, where he can discover a stunning show every night. On the approach to the portal, he immediately feels that the place has been inhabited for a long time. The place, bathed in a weak bluish light emits a strange sensation of mystery... As if the “presences” want to invite him to travel back in time... unless it is towards an enlightened timelessness! Suddenly, the notes of crystal-clear arpeggio start to gently ring out and the rose begins to sparkle. Under the effect of its bright rays, all of humanity seems to come out of the stone, while a fantastic setting is revealed bit by bit.
The large mineral book has just been opened. It starts here, with paradise lost... Now it's a matter of finding it again and bringing back its colours! The 21st century 'Image Lighters' offer you a vision of the multi-coloured splendor that 13th century travelers and people of Chartres could admire every day...
Attention: due to Holy Week, the illuminations of the Cathedral will begin at 10 p.m. from April 4 to 12, 2020. And they will be completely turned off on Thursday, April 9, and Friday, April 10, but you will still be able to see the other 21 illuminations.
About the Notre-Dame Cathedral
Notre-Dame of Chartres is one of bigger cathedrals of France and one of the first French sites registered on the UNESCO world heritage. 5 different versions from the Cathedral would have followed one another since the first construction. The Cathedral, which we can visit today, dates of the 13th century.