France - Enlightening the Medieval darkness

Dating back to the 12th century, Saint-Étienne cathedral is located in Agde, an ancient Greek colony on the coasts of Southern France renowned for the dark basalt coming from the nearby volcanic quarries that distinguishes many of its monuments. Erected to replace a 9th-century Carolingian edifice that had been built, in turn, on the foundations of a 5th-century Roman church, the Medieval Saint-Étienne cathedral had been later on fortified with precincts and provided with a 35-meter high donjon. Designed to serve as a fortress more than a proper clerical institution, Saint-Étienne looks extremely massive, its dark basalt walls between 2 and 3 meters thick soared towards the sky only by the square central tower. Fitted with prominent crenellations and machicolations, this fortress-like church was declared a monument historique in 1840. In its severe interior, the 17th century high altar of polychromatic marble stands out, along with the organs in Baroque style, for its unexpected elegance.

To further enhance the massive and imposing structure of this church, a uniform, well diffused and bright colour changing concept was required for the outside cathedral’s walls while for the nearby Pont de L’Herault, a vehicular bridge over the close river, a complementary colour lighting was needed to stress the bridge spans with a matching colour touch.  Relying upon their extreme flexibility and reliability, the lighting designers of the French company Citelum have specified GRIVEN’s LED products for the illumination of both architectural structures.  Batteries of DANUBE MK2 and PARADE D-RGB-12, imported by GRIVEN’s exclusive distributor for France, the company CSI of Fresnes, have been therefore installed onto the two structures by the company SOGETRALEEC.

Designed for refined wall-washing effects, PARADE D-RGB-12 was the perfect solution for lighting up the cathedral and its tower with real uniform colour coverage. Moreover, PARADE D-RGB-12 can be installed in any position and in any orientation, featuring an IP67 weather protection along with a compact size and light weight manageability, features that make it a perfect choice for protected buildings of historical importance like this. Using 80 high brightness LEDs to achieve an extremely high light output, DANUBE MK2 can be installed in any position and orientation, as witnessed by the installation on the Herault bridge spans. The combination of RGBW LEDs offers an unprecedented astonishing white light output quality, as well as a wider variety of intermediate colour hues for an even broader range of application purposes.

Lighting design by:  CITELUM
Installation company: SOGETRALEEC
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