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Always connected Ringtones to replace church bells in Lucerne

Art students Klarissa Flückiger and Mahtola Wittmer in bell tower

Art students Klarissa Flückiger and Mahtola Wittmer installed a mixing desk in the bell tower to relay ringtones.

(© KEYSTONE / ALEXANDRA WEY)

Mobile phone ringtones will temporarily replace the tolling of bells at St Peter’s Chapel in Lucerne. This is part of an art project that lasts until July 30. 

On Monday, a mixing desk was installed in the bell tower of the chapel, located next to the Chapel Bridge, one of Lucerne’s most popular tourist attractions. A loudspeaker near the bells will blast mobile phone ringtones at the whim of the artists involved in the project. 

The original bells have been out of action for the past few months due to renovation work in the chapel. 

The Catholic Church in Lucerne had decided to involve art students from the Lucerne University of Applied Sciences in the renovation of the chapel. The idea of replacing the pealing of bells with mobile phone rings began as a joke but the project eventually became a reality. 

The two art students behind the idea will decide when and how long the mobile phone rings sound. However, no ringing is allowed at night. St Peter’s Chapel is the oldest church in Lucerne. It has been renovated and transformed many times but the exact date of construction is not known. The oldest document referring to the chapel dates from 1178.


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