Madrid International Festival of Light

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Juan Gómez-Cornejo

27, 28 and 29 October
From 20 to 00h.

Estanque del Monumento de Alfonso XII
Parque de El Retiro. Recommended entrance: Puerta de la Independencia gate Last entry at 11pm

Nearby activities

La accesibilidad física del recorrido estará ligada a la accesibilidad del parque público.
Por causas ajenas a la organización y debido a la gran afluencia de público en algunos momentos del espectáculo, las condiciones de accesibilidad física previstas pueden verse modificadas.

DETENER EL TIEMPO (Holding back time) is Juan Gómez-Cornejo’s design for the monument to Alfonso XII in El Retiro Park. In collaboration with the Illusion Stage Company, the creator fuses music and light to sculpt air, weave water and inhabit dreams. A creation that enters into dialogue with the original authors of the monument in order to grasp the impossible, taking advantage of the possibilities offered by the space and involving the spectators at all times, who will be able to give free rein to their imagination to give the work its full meaning.

This work has been created especially for LuzMadrid 2023

JUAN GÓMEZ-CORNEJO has been working in theatre since 1980 as both a lighting designer and technical director. He is currently focused primarily on lighting design, for which he has received four Max Awards, the Medal of Fine Arts of Castilla la Mancha and the National Theatre Prize, among other distinctions. He has also designed several exhibition installations with light as their central element.

Idea, design and creation: Juan Gómez-Cornejo
Music consultancy and composition: Alberto Granados Reguilón
Light programming: Eduardo Chacón y  David Hortelano
Laser programming: Javier Sanchis (Pirolaser)
Sound design consultancy: Javier Isequilla


Towering over the El Retiro pond, this sculptural and architectural ensemble pays homage to King Alfonso XII and was inaugurated by his son, Alfonso XIII, in 1922. It consists of a hemicycle with a double Ionic colonnade, on whose frieze are carved the coats of arms of the different Spanish provinces of the time, together with scenes representing the typical trades of each region. In the centre is a tower that bears the equestrian statue of the monarch, sculpted in bronze by Mariano Benlliure.

With the collaboration of