“What art offers is space – a certain breathing room for the spirit”
~ John Updike
Historic buildings, crowded walkways, countless shops. What happens when you add art to the mix?
Last weekend, one of Boston’s major tourist destinations transformed into a magical urban escape for Illuminus. Since 2014, the nighttime festival has brought together artists and designers to revive the city’s iconic neighborhoods (recap on the debut at SoWa Arts District-Art After Dark). This year, Illuminus partnered with nonprofit LuminArtz and the Downtown Boston Business Improvement District (BID) to bring the program to Downtown Crossing.
Here are some event highlights:
Lantern Story: Furen Dai
Artist Furen Dai hits close to home with Lantern Story. Displaying handmade lanterns against an audio backdrop, the piece features local sentiments around the visa process (Lantern Story). With immigration reform being a hot topic, it’s moving to hear those affected speak rawly about their journeys and the uncertainties that lie ahead.
Solar Forest: Vanessa Till Hooper
Made up of over 300 lanterns, the installation puts an artistic spin on alternative energy. The quiet nature of Norman B. Leventhal Park serves as the perfect setting for this enchanting project (Solar Forest).
The steps on Washington Street
With a splash of neon, the popular rest stop turned into a glowing social scene. Reminiscent of the Red Steps in Times Square, NYC, the city witnessed how light can energize everyday spaces. I hope the buzz generated from Illuminus encourages Boston to continue promoting public arts initiatives. For more information on the works featured at the festival, head here (Projects2017).
How has public art impacted you? Could you see Illuminus coming to your neighborhood?
Leave a comment below!