Impossible Light

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Watch the trailer for the Truly CA episode: Impossible Light by filmmaker Jeremy Ambers.

If the Bay Bridge was your canvas, what would you do with it?

On March 5, 2013, San Francisco's skyline was transformed by an amazing sight. For the first time since the structures were erected, the Bay Bridge outshined the Golden Gate Bridge, her sexier, iconic sister to the west. 25,000 LED lights shined across the one-and-a-half mile-long stretch, defying the obstacles of a project years in the making. But just how did they pull it off?

Jeremy Ambers' Impossible Light profiles the men and women who made The Bay Lights project possible. Starting with the insane idea of lighting up the workaday, utilitarian Bay Bridge, the film follows the journey of overcoming three hurdles in realizing The Bay Lights' installation: getting it permitted, getting it funded, getting it built.

Enter artist Leo Villareal, a man whose extensive work with LED lights and encoded computer programming made him the perfect choice. With Villareal's interest in large-scale activations of urban spaces, inspired by his life changing experiences at Burning Man, and a crew made of the Bay Area's most skilled engineers, the team was energized and ready to dive in. But first, how do you deal with Homeland Security? How about the environmental impact? What are the best tie-ons for thousands of tiny lights?


Fueled by Kevin T. Doyle's compelling score and featuring harrowing footage from atop the Bay Bridge, Impossible Light is what Forbes called, "a powerful example of what's possible when you dream (very) big, and can successfully inspire engagement among all key stakeholders." The Bay Lights was a game changer, turning a crazy idea into a stunningly beautiful reality. Thousands of spectators have been treated to the end result each night. Now, see how the visionary team made the impossible possible.