Plymouth prepares to ‘Illuminate’ as spectacular light show returns

20th Nov 2018

Illuminate – the south west’s largest light show – returns to Plymouth this week with four days of spectacular immersive light installations at Royal William Yard. 

As darkness descends on Thursday 22 and each night until Sunday 25 November, the Yard will come alive with work from international artists as well as creative talent from within the city, as part of a FREE family friendly event linked to Mayflower 400. 

The festival has been designed and delivered by Made in Plymouth CIC – a partnership between the Real Ideas Organisation (RIO), the University of Plymouth, Plymouth College of Art and Plymouth Culture. 

Now in its second year and with 10,000 people expected to visit the festival, Illuminate is set to be bigger and better than ever before and will include installations from two renowned international artists, Xavi Bové and Thomas Voillaume. Spanish visual composer and artistic director, Bové, will be showcasing an interactive installation offering each visitor a personalised viewing experience, while French artist, Voillaume, will be presenting a monumental 8ft video mapped sculpture.

Work will also be on show from local artists including University of Plymouth alumni Paige Alexander, and former Plymouth College of Art student, Jamie Knight – whose video mapping work won the attention and funding from the European Commission’s Creative Europe programme. For the first time, visitors can also expect to be captivated by new water screen technology, as artists experiment with projecting onto the sea as well as the land.

Illuminate is free to attend and open to all ages, and there will be a variety of opportunities for children to make their own unique light creations, with a series of workshops taking place in the run up to and during the event. Visitors will also be able to enjoy a range of food and drinks from the Yard’s resident eateries, as well as pop-up food and drink stalls. 

Claire Honey, from the Real Ideas Organisation, has led the Illuminate project team, she said: “We’re absolutely delighted to be bringing back Illuminate for a second year, bigger and better than before, with even more incredible immersive experiences for people to come and enjoy. 

“Illuminate really is a celebration of Plymouth, its historic buildings and the creative talent and vision in the city and the digital innovation which is beginning to set us apart nationally and internationally.”

Hailey Cattle, Regional Marketing Manager, Urban Splash said

“Illuminate is one of the biggest and most popular events in the Royal William Yard’s calendar, and we can’t wait to welcome everyone back this year. Visitors can expect to be surprised and amazed, with almost every corner of the Yard coming alive with spectacular light installations, art installations and interactive activities. 

“It’s the perfect opportunity to see and explore the Yard like never before, and there are plenty of opportunities to get involved, including making your own light installations at one of the many workshops taking place. For those who want to get in to the true spirit of Illuminate, be sure to visit resident salon, YOKE, which will be offering visitors the chance to have their hair neon-styled!”

Visitors to Illuminate can also take up special travel deals from Plymouth Boat Trips and Plymouth Citybus to arrive at the Yard in style, as well as a range of food and drink offers from the Yard’s fantastic resident eateries. 

Illuminate runs from 5.30pm – 10pm from Thursday 22 to Sunday 25 November 2018.

For more information please visit www.illuminate-festival.co.uk