Lights on wood

photo: Ernst Moritz
photo: Ernst Moritz

A shipwreck was discovered on 3 December 1930 by workers digging in the Van Hoornekade in North Utrecht. The find attracted a great deal of attention, as it was thought to be from the Roman period. The Centraal Museum director had the wreck moved into the museum’s basement. A large whole was hacked into one of the side walls to fit this gigantic ship down into the basement. Here it has been on display to the public since 1936. The wood of the ship was once preserved using creosote, a tar product which is also used in railway sleepers. The strong smell of this tar has always been a striking aspect.

Interactive lighting installation

Monobanda created the interactive lighting installation Lights on wood espescially for the socalled Utrecht ship.
Lights on Wood tells a tale across time: the fleetingness of life can blind us to the beauty that surrounds us. Slowing down allows one to admire the finer details. The ship travels more slowly through time than the visitors and invites them to join in its slowed-down pace.


This installation was created by Monobanda, a collective of new-media artists investigating the impact of game and interaction. Here they have combined their fascination for time and interaction with their passion for tranquillity and simple beauty. 

The Utrecht ship
The Utrecht ship

photo: Bert Muller


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