New Bristol Light Festival for February 2020

The Rooms, Bristol - the Watershed's 2014 series of interactive installations, worked on by creative directors, Katherine Jewkes & Vashti Waite. Credit: Max McClure

Internationally experienced creative directors Katherine Jewkes and Vashti Waite have been appointed as co-directors

The festival will be a celebration of local and international talent and will make Bristol a ‘more welcoming home for its residents’.

The event is organised by the Bristol City Centre Business Improvement District (BID) in partnership with the Bristol City Council and the University of the West of England (UWE)’s Digital Cultures Research Centre. Bringing colour, light and play to Bristol’s public spaces during long winter days will attract more visitors and further boost the city’s urban economy.

Keith Rundle, operations director at Bristol City Centre BID, said: “January and February can be dark and difficult months of the year for many of us, and indeed for cities, their communities, businesses and retailers. So we’re hugely excited to be working together to inject some light and fun into the city centre and spread a little wonder beyond Christmas and into the New Year.”

Newly appointed Bristol based co-directors Katherine Jewkes and Vashti Waite will soon begin planning for the festival’s first year.

Jewkes and Waite have a combined four decades’ experience creating award-winning work around the globe including projects for Twitter and Manchester International Festival. The pair are delighted to be working together again in their home city after collaborating in 2014 to create The Rooms, an interactive installation with talks, workshops and film screenings across various Bristol city centre venues.

Co-director Katherine Jewkes said: “We are thrilled by the opportunity to work alongside the rich and varied talents of Bristol’s unique cultural sector and city centre businesses to create a new Light Festival for the people of Bristol and beyond.”

Over the next three years the pair intend to make the Light Festival into an internationally recognised event and form partnerships outside the city. They are particularly interested in building on Bristol’s reputation for green initiatives and technologies by exploring sustainable light art and interactive playful environments.

Vashti Waite said: “Bristol has a rich history of bold, creative endeavours and we are delighted to be appointed co-directors to build Bristol Light Festival over the next three years into a celebration worthy of this world-renowned festival city.”

This new addition to Bristol’s festival calendar is set to lighten the winter mood after the Christmas period has ended. Keith Rundle said: “Both Katherine and Vashti are incredibly well-established festival and event curators, with exciting connections to an international network of artists and collaborators. It is fantastic to be have them both working together in Bristol to deliver an innovative, contemporary and completely new event for the city.”

Further information about how to get involved with Bristol Light Festival will made available shortly. In the meantime, artists with an interest in creating and showing work can email Keith Rundle Operations Director of the City Centre BID – keith@bristolcitycentrebid.co.uk

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