The Acropolis is Lit!
They say you have to roll with the times. And times are coming in fast and hot. Things are changing, and quicker than previously. Much quicker. So, even though the old adage ‘if it ain’t broken don’t fix it’ finds meaning in much of the current endeavors, in the Acropoli’s case it certainly finds no traction. For a monument as iconic as the Parthenon and its surrounding testaments to the glory of western civilization, one can argue that cutting edge technologies ought to be deployed to enhance its tangible and visceral appeal. Along the decades, significant modifications have been made. It now even has an elevator for the handicapped, virtual tours of the sacred rock and a number of other enhancements, one of which is the masterful lighting of the Parthenon and some of its other structures.
This lighting has been used for almost 20 years, and even though ‘it ain’t broken’, the Acropolis has been given a light makeover. Visual lighting, that is. And what exactly are we looking at? The new lighting which is more environmentally friendly and easier on the eye also happens to lessen the light pollution around the monument.
In addition to that, the new lighting technique employed by one of Greece’s premier light specialists enhances the texture, curvature and relief. This way, new lights have been set up to illuminate every possible angle and bring up the stunning geometry employed by Kalikrates, Phidias and his merry team of architects.
What’s more, new monuments have been illuminated. The Acropolis Is comprised of many adjacent temples, theaters and structures. Looking up at it from street level, or perched up on the Pnyx, or Filoppapos Hill, one can now admire the entirety of the Acopolis collection, and that now consists of the Acropolis hill, the walls, the Parthenon, the Propylaea, the Temple of Athena Nike, the Erechtheion, the Theater of Dionysus, the Stoa of Eumenes, the Sanctuary of Dionysus, the choragic monument of Thrasyllos, the Asklepieion of Athens, the caves of Apollo and Aglauros/ Klepsydra, and the Sanctuary of Aphrodite.
The Acropolis was built to commemorate the sacrifices of ordinary men against tyranny. It’s new shining light remains as relevant as ever, and presents us with an opportunity to always remember that the darkest nights produce the brightest stars.