About Us

illuminating York invites you to discover the city in a new light, to experience the magical properties of light and be moved by what these illuminations reveal in our surroundings and in ourselves.

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Illuminating York is organised by a steering committee which comprises of representatives from Make It York, the City of York Council, York UNESCO City of Media Arts, York Museums Trust, The Institute of Physics, English Heritage, The University of York and York St John University. York’s ambition is to showcase the city in exciting and innovative ways, attracting visitors from across the globe. Illuminating York also enables the city to showcase the best of regional, national and international artistic talent through a programme of curatorial, commissioned and invited work including installations, projection, film, animation and new technologies.

Illuminating York 2012 - National Dance
Illuminating York 2012 – National Dance

The Aims and Objectives of illuminating York 2015

  • Celebrate the transformative power of light in all its forms, from sunlight to artificially generated light – from the flickering flame to the light emitting diode
  • Populate an easily followed route at the heart of the city
  • Broker new relationships between people and the fabric of the city – to reveal York, and the way people experience it, in a new light
  • Provide a creative context for artists, designers, engineers and the creative industries to collaborate in exploring new ways in which light impacts on people and  the life of the city
  • Seek to achieve its objectives within the context of sustainability
  • Contribute to UNESCO International Year of Light and engage with the City of Media Arts

As well as being a showcase for York as a contemporary, creative city, Illuminating York is also an ongoing project, which aims to use light and innovation to breathe new life into York’s historic built urban environment after dark, championing the development and progression of permanent lighting projects.