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Nithlight was a commissioned artwork created by artists Emily Tough and Philip Mairs as part of Nithraid 2019. The commissioned looked to create a large scale light and audio installation for the Mill Green after dark, an event and a happening to mark the close of the River Festival. The unfortunate weather may have put much of the Nithraid programme out for this year, but Nithlight was able to continue once the high tides had subsided.

Nithlight took inspiration from the festival theme of salt and ritual, including salt’s local, historical and mythical uses. The work was also inspired by the vibrating metal ‘Chladni’ plate, which responds to audio frequencies in creating patterns on the surface of the plate. The patterns were projected over a maze of ship masts and sails installed on the Mill Green.

To accompany the installation, a workshop was held during the afternoon, experimenting with sound, cladni plates and amplified sounds created by the participants.

The commission was supported by The Holywood Trust, with mentoring support from Stephen Pickering and John Wallace.

More about the inspirations behind the project available here:

Image credits: Jamie Thomson and Kirstin McEwan.

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