Museums Exhibits

‘Starry Night’ bike path illuminates the ground to celebrate Vincent van Gogh

A cyclist rides along the Van Gogh Bike Path.

A cyclist rides along the Van Gogh Bike Path.  ('Daan Roosegaarde'/Heijmans)

The Dutch town of Eindhoven has just opened a brilliant bike path to commemorate the life of one of its most famous residents, painter Vincent van Gogh.

Created by Daan Roosegarde, a Dutch artist who specializes in interactive installations, the solar powered path contains over 50,000 glow-in-the-dark stones covering half a mile. It took a team of 12 designers and engineers eight months to complete the plans. Installation was completed in 10 days. The swirling path design is also accented by LED lights to enhance the brightness. [image]

The project connects the "cultural history" of van Gogh with technology of the future.

The unique installation celebrates the 125th anniversary of van Gogh’s death and was inspired by one of the artist’s most well-known paintings, "Starry Night."

Using alternative energy to light the Van Gogh Bicycle Path is part of a larger project by Roosegaarde called “Smart Highway.”[image]

"The van Gogh-Roosegaarde path uses new smart coatings which charge at daytime, and glow at night up to eight hours," Stefanie Viering of Studio Roosegaarde explained to "When there is too little sunlight for several days we can ‘boost’ the coatings with a little electricity we take from a solarpanel." 

Though van Gogh lived and worked in various towns in the Netherlands, he spent several years in Eindhoven, utilizing the town as a backdrop for many of his works.  

The path is a permanent installation so visitors to Eindhoven will be able to enjoy its twinkling lights for years to come. The design firm hopes to incorporate similar "light-emitting" technology in different landscape designs.

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