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Daan Roosegaarde’s ‘Waterlicht’ at Columbia University

WATERLICHT by Daan Roosegaarde, via

Tue, Oct 22 - Thu, Oct 24  2019

Lenfest Center for the Arts Plaza - New York Consulate Region

Columbia University School of the Arts presents the monumental public art event WATERLICHT, or water light, designed by Dutch artist Daan Roosegaarde, as part of its campus-wide initiative Year of Water. Restorative and ruinous, excessive and scarce, water sustains life on Earth. In fall 2019, Columbia University launches the Year of Water, an interdisciplinary investigation of water in all of its social, political, historical, cultural, economic and environmental inequities and complexities. Why water? Because it fuels or destroys ecosystems, biodiversity and the global economy, and is central to many current geopolitical questions and conflicts.

A centerpiece of the Year of Water programming is WATERLICHT—the site-wide, large-scale light installation by Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde—scheduled for public viewing October 22, 23 and 24 at Columbia University’s Lenfest Center for the Arts. Propelled by LED lights and lenses, WATERLICHT illuminates the power and poetry of water, while bringing awareness to both water overabundance and water scarcity. Due to the unique nature of the installation, WATERLICHT can only be viewed after sunset, from 7:30 pm to 11 pm.

Led by Columbia’s School of the Arts and conceived by its Dean, Carol Becker, Year of Water encompasses art, lectures, symposia and research uniting the University and its constituents in exploring the planet’s most precious resource.

“WATERLICHT is about showing the power of living with water, which is more relevant than ever in New York City. It is an honour to work with Columbia University to exhibit WATERLICHT, and connect with a new generation, which plays a central role in changing the climate.” —Daan Roosegaarde

WATERLICHT by Daan Roosegaarde, via

Viewing Dates:

Tuesday, October 22, 2019, 7:30 pm –11 pm
Wednesday, October 23, 2019, 7:30 pm –11 pm
Thursday, October 24, 2019, 7:30 pm –11 pm
Lines open for entry starting at 6:30 pm each night.

Typical viewing experience is approximately 30 minutes.

Free and Open to the Public
Registration required. Registration opens October 1. Stay tuned for details at

Daan Roosegaarde talk

Daan Roosegaarde will discuss WATERLICHT and other visionary projects such as ‘Gates of Light’, ‘Van Gogh Path’, ‘Smog Free Project’, and ‘Space Waste Lab’ with Carol Becker, Dean of Columbia University School of the Arts on October 23, 2019.

The Forum at Columbia University
605 W. 125th St.
New York, NY 10027

More info and registration.

About Daan Roosegaarde

Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde (b. 1979) is a creative thinker and maker of social designs that explore relations among people, technology and space, and is best known for fabricating landscapes of the future. He founded Studio Roosegaarde in 2007, where he works with his team of designers and engineers toward a better world. Roosegaarde is a Young Global Leader at the World Economic Forum and was featured by Forbes and Good 100 as a creative change maker.

WATERLICHT by Daan Roosegaarde, via

About Studio Roosegaarde

Studio Roosegaarde is the social design lab of Dutch artist and innovator Daan Roosegaarde. Together with his team of designers and engineers, Roosegaarde creates landscapes of the future for a better world. The studio connects people, technology and space to improve daily life in urban environments and spark imagination. Roosegaarde’s mantra “Schoonheid” is a Dutch word that has two meanings: “beauty” and “to clean,” as in clean air, clean energy and clean water. For Roosegaarde, this should be a fundamental condition of daily life. Internationally acclaimed works include WATERLICHT (a dream landscape where you can experience the power and poetry of water), SMOG FREE PROJECT (the largest outdoor air purifier that turns smog into jewelry) and SMART HIGHWAY (roads that charge throughout the day and glow at night). Studio Roosegaarde is located in a former glass factory in the harbor of Rotterdam in the Netherlands, also known as the Dream Factory. Here, new innovations are developed into smart prototypes for the landscapes of tomorrow. Studio Roosegarde has vast experience in public space commissions for the cities of Rotterdam, Beijing, Paris, Eindhoven and Stockholm. The Studio also initiates its own projects to research new social innovations, gives lectures and has a pop-up studio in Shanghai, China. Roosegaarde has exhibited at the Rijksmuseum Amsterdam, Stedelijk Museum Amsterdam, Design Museum in London, Tate Modern in London, the Mori Art Museum in Tokyo, the Musee des Arts Decoratifs in Paris, the Victoria & Albert Museum in London and Google Zeitgeist, and has won numerous international innovation awards.

Columbia University School of the Arts

Columbia University School of the Arts awards the Master of Fine Arts degree in Film, Theatre, Visual Arts and Writing and the Master of Arts degree in Film and Media Studies; it also offers an interdisciplinary program in Sound Art. The School is a thriving, diverse community of talented, visionary and committed artists from around the world and a faculty comprised of acclaimed and internationally renowned artists, film and theatre directors, writers, producers, critics and scholars. In 2015, the School marked the 50th anniversary of its founding. In 2017, the School opened the Lenfest Center for the Arts, a multi-arts venue designed as a hub for the presentation and creation of art across disciplines on the University’s Manhattanville campus.

DutchCulture USA