Lumiere 2019, Durham’s festival of light, will feature 37 artworks across the city, with a mix of interactive, playful and bold creations.
The free festival will reimagine the city through dramatic installations, dynamic projections and reflective works, which showcase the diversity and creativity of light art. This year’s Lumiere will feature favourite artworks from previous festivals, alongside new commissions by international artists and fresh talent from the North East.
Lumiere 2019 marks 10 years since the festival first launched in Durham, and while the number of artworks and visitors has continued to increase, the idea behind the festival – to bring art out onto the streets and cast the city in a new light – has remained steadfast.
Durham will transform into a magical winter nightscape with extraordinary new artworks and commissions, including interactive installations where audiences manipulate or become part of the art.
Stones is a shape-shifting video-mapped projection on the facade of Durham Cathedral that visitors can change using stone tablets, whilst Human Tiles will transform the exterior of Gala Theatre & Cinema into a kaleidoscope of projected patterns created in response to the movements of visitors bodies.
Tug at the rope that propels floating sculpture Celestial Brainstorm and sparkling neurons will be released into the night sky; make music by rotating The Stars Come out at Night; and fly up and down in a playground of illuminated see-saws.
Geometrical Traces will illuminate the city’s riverside tree canopies in a new work that draws upon mathematical patterns found in nature. Glowing balloon dog sculptures Neon Dogs; Shoefiti drawing upon the urban phenomenon of shoe tossing, with over 150 illuminated shoes strung along Durham’s streets; and an immersive work featuring 500 orbs of light and 500 voices will also feature.
End over End will remind everyone of childhood with a clever homage to the iconic slinky; Washed Up, is a series of glowing collages assembled from plastic reclaimed from beaches; and A Different View provides a playful twist on the humble traffic light.
Women residents at HMP Low Newton in Brasside have worked with poet Hannah Jane Walker to create The Next Page, a message for the future in neon displayed at Clayport Library. Meanwhile piano players of all ages will have the chance to see their music-making transformed into shape-shifting patterns on the facade of Rushford Court for Keys of Light.
Lumiere 2019 will see the return of many past favourites from throughout the festival’s history. Two artworks from the very first edition of the festival will be making a comeback: Echelle, the pink neon ladder by Ron Haselden, will appear in its original location on Saddler Street, whilst Bottle Festoon will pop up across the city. More than 900 children and adults haven taken part in drop-in workshops to create these dazzling chandeliers made from recycled bottles.
The giant glittering snow globe I Love Durham by Jacques Rival joins the atmospheric sculpture Cloud, formed from 6,000 incandescent light bulbs. Fire alchemists Compagnie Carabosse return to illuminate Durham Cathedral and its surrounding grounds with Spirit, whilst Durham Castle will be transformed into a fairytale village with Fool’s Paradise. The River Wear will also welcome back Fogscape #03238, a mysterious nocturnal fog sculpture.
Lumiere will also feature the return of two of the festival’s site-specific works: Cosmic Architecture, projected onto Durham University’s Ogden Centre for Fundamental Physics; and For the Birds, a collection of installations drawing visitors through the urban wilderness of Durham University’s Botanic Garden.
When: 14th – 17th November 2019
More info: www.lumiere-festival.com