75 Years of Human Rights: A Light Art Celebration in the Heart of Vienna

Lifestyle & TravelMore+ ♦ Published: October 24, 2023; 21:06 ♦ (Vindobona)

The Parliament in Vienna will become a radiant work of light art between November 2023 and January 2024 to celebrate the 75th anniversary of the signing of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Austrian artist Victoria Coeln, known for her impressive light installations in world-famous locations, will transform the facade of the Parliament into a shining symbol of diversity, freedom, dignity, and rights for all.

In the past, the façade of the Parliament building was illuminated by the light artist Victoria Coeln. / Picture: © Parlamentsdirektion/Bubu Dujmic

On December 10, 2023, the global appreciation of human rights reached a significant milestone: the 75th anniversary of the United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights. This historic declaration is the foundation for freedom, justice, and peace in the world. The Parliament in Vienna is using this anniversary as an opportunity to draw attention to the crucial importance of human rights for democracy and to send a strong signal for the preservation of these rights.

Victoria Coeln, a renowned Austrian artist with an impressive portfolio of light installations in cathedrals, world heritage sites, and urban projects worldwide, was chosen to transform the Parliament building into a fascinating work of light art. With her "chromotopic" works that intertwine space, time, and thought through light and color, Coeln creates new visual relationships and perspectives that transcend material structures. Angela Stief, curator and director of Albertina Modern, describes Coeln's art as "an art of transformation" that manifests itself in impressive plays of color and refractions of light.

From November 2023 to January 2024, the facade of the Parliament will shine in the "Light of Human Rights" on selected days. The light installation uses grids and rainbow colors as symbols of diversity, freedom, dignity, and rights for all, while the lines of light represent the spiritual traces of our thoughts, views, and insights. Coeln emphasizes that the light in her installation is not only a technical medium but also symbolizes the inner glow of people that creates new connections and gives hope, courage, and confidence.

In addition to the light art, there will be insights into the current human rights situation in Parliament, on the official website and Parliament's social media channels, as well as contributions from political and social figures. These actions are intended to raise awareness and encourage the public to actively engage in the defense and promotion of human rights.

Through this initiative, Parliament not only highlights the importance of human rights but also creates a space for reflection and inspiration, supported by the powerful language of art. At a time when human rights are under increasing pressure around the world, Vienna is sending a bright message of solidarity and commitment to a fairer and free world.

Austrian Parliament

Victoria Coeln