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Moonlight for Colle dell'Infinito

In 2018 the Municipality of Recanati promoted a project financed with MiBACT funds to restore the identity of the Colle dell’Infinito Park, the location universally known for having inspired the poet Giacomo Leopardi to write his famous poem “The Infinite”.

The project focused on two main aspects: vegetation and lighting. The first, a botanical reorganization and regeneration initiative, curated by C.Re.Ha. nature, a spin-off of the Università Politecnica delle Marche, led by Prof. Eduardo Biondi (Department of Environmental Science and Plant Production) under the supervision of FAI-appointed landscape architect Paolo Pejrone, involved planting new trees, shrubs, and flowers with a particular focus on local species and regeneration of the plants already present. The lighting, on the other hand, was designed by Macerata-based maestro Dante Ferretti, three-time Oscar-winning scenographer, who has used light to create a concept based on an emotional experience that enhances the natural beauty of the place and the evocative heritage of Leopardi’s poetry. The system was donated by iGuzzini illuminazione and was installed by DEA S.p.A (Distribuzione Elettrica Adriatica S.p.A.) using iGuzzini luminaires. There were three key goals driving the lighting design: to reduce the energy consumption of the previous system, to increase the safety and comfort of the area, and to create a nocturnal landscape with a truly Leopardian spirit through artificial light that does not erase the mystery of darkness and which could be softened, when necessary, to emphasize the nocturnal emotion of the moonlight. To respect and enhance the vision of the starry sky that Leopardi often evokes in his works, all the luminaires installed use optics and accessories that control parasitic light, responsible for light pollution, a phenomenon iGuzzini has been fighting since the 1990s.

The new lighting design for the Colle dell'Infinito Park, created in 1937 by the architect Dossart to mark the centenary of the poet’s death, enhances the place by limiting the visual impact of the luminaires and hiding them, wherever possible, amongst the greenery. The system also features variable lighting regimes and a single warm colour temperature of 3000 K. The only exception is the park access avenue, the area where the moonlight effect is currently staged, on Fridays.

The special moonlight effect projected on the foliage of the trees in the avenue is obtained by lowering the lighting levels of the functional luminaires and by exploiting the WGB technology of the Woody luminaires positioned along the access avenue, which merges a 4000 K colour temperature with a small percentage of blue and green. This lighting effect is combined with music and the voice of Vittorio Gassman reciting “The Infinite”.

Iconic pole-mounted Fiamma luminaires mark the park entrances, while pole-mounted Twilight luminaires provide uniform lighting to the horizontal plane. 610 and 250 mm versions of iWay bollards illuminate the path running along the western walls of the Santo Stefano Convent as well as the secondary panoramic paths. The profile of the convent walls and of the cenotaph is outlined by combining high visual comfort, sharp light beams, and the powerful Opti Beam optics of the Palco InOut projectors.

Ground-recessed Light Up Earth luminaires fitted with adjustable Medium optics illuminate the foliage of the evergreens from below; the same luminaires, fitted with Wall-Washer optics evenly illuminate the exedra in Via Monte Tabor. The Colle dell’Infinito and the famous epigraph dedicated to Leopardi’s “solitary hill” are illuminated by Woody and MaxiWoody projectors.

The use of the DALI protocol allows to immediately dim the light intensity emitted by individual luminaires. The system was also designed to implement IoL (Intelligence of Light) technologies; thus, every light point becomes an “intelligent node” in a system able to monitor the surrounding environment and to send signals that can both regulate the light, when necessary, and communicate information to enhance the experience of the space. Additional security features, Wi-Fi connectivity, and power points for mobile devices can be integrated into the luminaires to provide services and information to visitors, locals, and tourists. Specific monitoring systems for environment and vegetation conditions can also be installed to sustain the conservation and development of the plant and animal species present.

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  • Year
  • Client
    Municipality of Recanati
  • Lighting project:
    Dante Ferretti
  • Electrical design:
    DEA S.p.A (Distribuzione Elettrica Adriatica S.p.A.)
  • Photographer
    Giuseppe Saluzzi
    Studio Buschi (Opening)

Project Quote

" “What I wanted to emphasize is the romantic contrast between moonlight and artificial light simultaneously illuminating the town, its alleyways, its squares, its monuments and its streets, all the way up to the Colle dell’Infinito. In this spot, it was impossible not to draw parallels with the life of one of its most illustrious citizens, so we tried to create a poetic light which, I hope, will enhance the beauty of these Leopardian settings.”"

Dante Ferretti

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