Enlighten in Civic 2020

Local artists to illuminate the gateway to the city centre

Published 01 July 2020

Local artists illuminated the gateway to the city centre

Enligten Festival 2020 branding illuminating the Sydney and Melbourne Buildings

The Sydney and Melbourne Buildings were illuminated with the work of two Canberra artists during this year’s Enlighten Festival.

The historic buildings that mark the entry to the city centre were illuminated from February 28 until 9 March.

Illuminating the Sydney and Melbourne Buildings helped connect the Enlighten Festival with Civic last year and we built on that success with an even bigger program in the city centre this year.

The buildings looked better than ever with five bold and colourful creations, two each from Jodie Cunningham and George Rose, and one created from the neon shapes from the festival’s 2020 branding.

Evening performances and activities took place around the buildings during this period to help connect the city centre with the festival.

The Canberra Centre also got into the festival spirit with five “mini beast” installations, including a gesture-controlled humming Neon Cuckoo Bee, an enormous proximity-activated Swallowtail Butterfly, and a touch sensor singing Cicada, located throughout the centre from 28 February to 25 March.

For information about the broader Enlighten Festival visit enlightencanberra.com


George Rose

Artist George Rose spends most of her time climbing up ladders and painting murals. Since abandoning her formal design training several years ago, she has opted to pursue a multidisciplinary art practice to use colour, gradients and type to spread her uplifting messages.Enligten Festival 2020 - Works by George Rose illuminating the Sydney and Melbourne Buildings

George has spent the last several years travelling from one project to another, rarely in one city for longer then a few months completing art commissions for a diverse range of clients. She has recently worked with Brown Brothers, Instagram, Jansport and Samsung to name a few. If she’s not completing work for commercial projects, she’s on the global street art festival circuit including Bright Walls, Colour Tumby, First Coat, Perfect Match, Roskilde, Sea Walls, Street Prints, Tropica, Wall to Wall and Wonderwalls.

“My focus on this installation was to use colour, gradient and Australian botanicals to create an inspiring projection with positive impact. My art practice is all about scale and as a muralist, I’m quite ambitious in my ideas. Light projections excite me because I often like merging technological methods with analogue drawings. This project is like a home-coming. Whilst I travel the world, Canberra is where my parents reside and where I call home.” – George Rose

Jodie Cunningham 'Canberra Journeys - Canberra Futures'

Artist Jodie Cunningham has an obsession with colour, circles, pattern and the delights of perspex. She trained as a painter and also works with public art, installation, drawing, digital imaging, sculpture, jewellery and design. Her work deals with the themes of abstraction, symbolism, ornamentation, colour, play, place, community, architecture, emotion, memory, sustainability and transformation.Enligten Festival 2020 - Works by Jodie Cunningham illuminating the Sydney and Melbourne Buildings

She has more than 25 years’ experience as a practicing artist and regularly exhibits in group and solo exhibitions.

The 'Canberra Journeys - Canberra Futures' series reflects on the idea of journeys: large and small journeys, life journeys and currently our community's journey through unprecedented weather events and bushfire disasters.

“The work I have created for Enlighten 2020 includes symbols of gratitude and hope that respond to the 2020 bushfire emergency and the urgent need for climate repair. These art works utilise contemporary symbols referencing personal and collective memories and symbols of hope for our community. With inspiration coming from a variety of local sources, including the Marion Mahoney and Walter Burley Griffin 1911 plans for Canberra, patterns from local suburban architecture, the pinwheel - turning our luck around, water drops - to break the drought, wind-turbines and sunrays- renewable energy sources to build a sustainable future.” – Jodie Cunningham


AUSTRALIAN DANCE PARTY presents Autumn Lanterns

Thursday 5 March saw Australian Dance Party weaving movement and music through the city in coloured, hooped, luminescent garments, symbolic of lanterns lighting the way.

Weather impacted performances

Unfortunately, due to wet weather, the following scheduled performances were unable to progress.

Tuesday 3 March, 7-8pm

Poetry in the Place – Illuminations with words

Young and emerging poets share their words as the buildings illuminate at the gateway to the city

Wednesday 4 March & Saturday 7 March, from 7.15pm

KREWDBORGS - Overthrown queens

The KREWDBorgs, are intergalactic party poppers from KREWDBitopia. Picking up on a radio frequency from across the universe, they thought everybody was doing a brand new dance so they got their loco into motion to get their groove on with the people from Planet Earth. Badly guised as humans these cyborgs are here to funk up the world as you know it. Everybody dance now. Harder. Better. Faster. Stronger. KREWDBorgs are a KREWDBits creation.

Friday 6 March 7.30-9.30pm  & Sunday 8 March, 8-10pm

Aerobicide: Feel Better

A performance art installation that you can dance along to. Performers succumb to the physical and existential toll of modern wellness culture, set to a pumping set of mutant dance-pop classics by the acclaimed Dead DJ Joke.

Canberra Centre Installations

The Canberra Centre’s “Mini Beasts” were available to view in-centre from the 28 February until 25 March. The Mini Beasts included a gesture-controlled humming Neon Cuckoo Bee, an enormous proximity-activated Swallowtail Butterfly, and a touch-triggered singing Cicada, which were up to 4m high and were fully illuminated by thousands of pixel mapped LED lights.

The Mini Beasts were in multiple locations and the Canberra Centre designed a trail map so children could collect stamps at each insect and once completed, they could enter a competition at the customer service desk for a chance to win a prize.