Gard Gitlestad

Lighting design for architecture and installation

Gol Stave Church

In celebration of their 125th anniversary, the Norwegian Museum of Cultural History commissioned Ingrid Solvik, Reidun Solvik and myself to put up a small light festival in their open air museum. Among several different installations, this involved lighting design for a 13th century stave church.

The lighting design consisted of both exterior and interior lighting and sound. The concept was centred around the historical significance of churces as cultural and social meeting points in the rural areas of Norway – but simply highlighting architectural features and contrasting the historical building with contemporary technology and aesthetics were also parts of the concept.

The exterior lighting used weatherproof moving lights programmed in synchronisation with a bespoke soundtrack by Tonik Ensemble. The interior installation was a «deconstructed disco» where a modular synthesizer generated abstract music based on random voltages, while the space was illuminated by beam lights – also controlled by randomness – reflected off a large mirror ball.

Weatherproof moving lights from Prolights were supplied by Prostage.

An excerpt of the 7-minute sequence can be viewed below:

Eschersheimer Wasserturm

Architectural lighting installation for the bi-annual Luminale festival in Frankfurt, which is arranged in connection with the Light+Building trade fair.

The installation consisted of temporary exterior and interior illumination of a water tower from 1901, as well as a small indoor audiovisual installation. The installation was designed and rigged in collaboration with Josefine W. Nergård and Bulut Büküm. Equipment was provided by Lumenpulse.

Factory Light Festival

Various installations for the first editions (2013-2015) of Factory Light Festival in Slemmestad, Norway; mostly temporary architectural lighting, intended to re-activate disused industrial areas in the city centre. Slemmestad is peculiar in that major areas of the city are occupied by the remains of a cement factory whose production was shut down years ago – making it a very interesting place to work with lighting.

Most of the installations were temporary, while a few remained in place semi-permanently.

All of the installation work for the festival was done in collaboration with my fellow student Josefine W. Nergård.

In addition to the various installations, I also provided technical, practical and administrative assistance to the festival in the form of artist booking and coordination, artistic management, funding applications, in-kind fundraising, and various other tasks.


Part of a larger outdoor lighting project in Nord-Odal, Norway, this installation of luminous pinewood logs on a river bank is intended as a reference to how the logging industry historically used the river for transportation of logs (log driving). The illuminated logs are stripped of bark, but are mostly untreated so that they will be naturally weathered – over the years, the wood will tranform to a gray colour, the slots that the light shines through will change in shape and size, and more cracks will develop. Thus, the environment will continue to shape the installation for years to come.

The logs have been hollowed out, and diffuse Plexiglas tubes internally illuminated by colour changing LED strips have been placed inside. The light shines through slots that have been cut free-hand by chainsaw.

The installation was developed in collaboration with:

Kote 50

This temporary installation in a hillside in Drammen, Norway was designed to raise awareness of a lawsuit against the Norwegian government initiated by a coalition of environmental organisations. Specifically, the question of the case is whether the government is violating Article 112 of the Constitution by continuing to issue oil extraction permits on the Norwegian continental shelf.

The installation aimed to visualise potential consequences of man-made climate changes in a very long time perspective, as a reminder that possible changes may continue far beyond the year 2100, when most calculations and predictions tend to stop.

In the book The Long Thaw, the climatologist David Archer estimates that chain reactions could cause a global average sea level rise of 50 metres within several thousand years, if current greenhouse gas emissions remain unchanged.

To contextualise this, a 150-metre long continous line of light at 50 metres above sea level followed the contour of the terrain, crossing several hiking footpaths in a hillside overlooking the city. Designed to be seen both from afar and up close, the installation attemped to somehow make a rather unfathomable prospect more tangible.

The installation was made in collaboration with Ingrid Solvik.

Oslo City Architecture Awards

Lighting design, manufacturing and installation for the exhibition of finalists for the Oslo City Architecture Award 2015. Designed to reinforce the concept of the exhibition, developed by Line Solgaard and Sebastian Sanders, while also taking into account various practical concerns such as universal design and accessibilty, energy efficiency, and ease of installation and maintenance.

The lighting consisted of custom linear fixtures with LED strips in extruded aluminium profiles. The exhibiton was installed outside the Oslo City Hall in September 2015, and the equipment was re-used for several subsequent editions of the exhibition.


An attempt at an artistic remix of the ubiquitous standard exit signs, as covered by the standard ISO7010. The characteristic running silhouette, orignally drawn by Yukio Ota in 1979, has been magnified to be approximately three metres tall. A total of four of these enormous luminous humanoids, which are folded across the middle to wrap around the scaffolding towers they are attached to, mark the exits of the area of Øyafestivalen in Oslo.

The silhouette is cut out from OSB plywood sheets and is covered in fluorescent green paint, illuminated by UV LED lights making it emit an intense green glow.