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Photo tour of holiday ‘Lightscape’ at Los Angeles Arboretum

by Jeff DePaoli

If you’re looking for a holiday light display in the non-traditional sense, look no further than the Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden where they’ve brought back their popular “Lightscape” display with an expanded path. This wintery stroll through the gardens sets a festive mood with light displays created by various designers and artists. Here’s a look at some of the offerings available this year.

lightscape los angeles arboretum
Photos by Jeff DePaoli
whole hole
“Whole Hole” by Vendel & DeWolf

“Whole Hole” is an installation by Vendel & DeWolf consisting of hundreds of LED strips which are typically used as Christmas decorations given their familiar look of melting ice or falling stars. Those who enter “Whole Hole” are pulled into a kind of wormhole in which they move faster than light. They travel to another place in space or even to a parallel universe, like Alice who accidentally ended up in Wonderland after she fell into the rabbit hole. But those who make it through Whole Hole also make the journey of existence, which begins and ends with a movement towards light: a baby that is born sees the light of day, and whoever dies sees the light at the end of the tunnel.

lightscape los angeles arboretum
“Light Fall” by ITHACA Studio

This winter light work, “Light Fall,” tumbles from heights to the garden floor featuring long strings of LED light which change color in time to the music. With light reaching to the heavens and surrounded by garden fountains, this multi-sensory display is one you won’t soon forget.

bubble baubles
“Bubble Baubles” by Atelier Sisu

“Bubble Baubles” is an interpretation of a universal holiday season: vibrant colors, eye catching shapes, and something that interacts with the immediate environment. It’s made up of over 80 spheres. During the hours of darkness, the bauble spheres will come to life with a dynamic and eye catching light display. Internally illuminated and individually pixel mapped with curated animations.

lightscape los angeles arboretum
“Remembrance Garden” by Mandylights

“Rememberance Garden” features hundreds of beautiful roses peacefully glowing in the moonlight. The scale and beauty of this garden makes it the perfect place to stop and reflect.

neon strings
“Neon Strings” by Culture Creative

“Neon Strings” is made from neon coated string which creates geometric patterns in the dark. When hit with the right amount of blacklight, these neon strings almost look like lasers beaming through the darkness of night.

lightscape los angeles arboretum
“Venus” by Scott Gianelli

Like the seashell under the feet of Botticelli’s Venus, a water fan erupts from the pond. Its nearly 100-foot diameter is painted from the front and behind by beams of light synchronized with music, marrying together a dazzling display of light, water, and the architecture of the Queen Anne Cottage behind it.

laser garden
“Laser Garden” by Mandlights

“Laser Garden” is a constantly moving, rotating and evolving experience that sees the audience immersed in a sea of countless green laser beams. While the beams create a seemingly impenetrable web of light, they pick out strange shapes in the night, illuminating trees and the ground in ways you’ve never seen before. Stand inside the installation for a while to experience the different effects that fog creates as it moves through the space.

As you can see, “Lightscape” has a lot to offer. And this is just a taste of the beautiful light displays available to guests during the self-paced experience. The overall journey takes around 90 minutes for most people. There’s a stop mid-way through the experience where they sell S’mores kits to roast on an open fire, hot chocolate, and more tasty treats. “Lightscape” is running now through January 8, 2023 at the Los Angeles Arboretum & Botanic Garden. Reserve your spot now.

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