Light up Leicester returns for its bigger and better second edition

The second edition of illuminated artwork to light up the city centre.

If you've been into the city centre over the last couple days you may have noticed the additions of impressive light-based sculptures and artworks.

The first ever Light Up Leicester was a huge success in 2020, so it's only right to bring back the illuminations but this time, they'r set to be bigger and better!

From Thursday, March 3, 2022 the illuminations will be showing for four nights between 6-10pm.

In its second edition, this year’s festival will include impressive, large-scale projects from some of the world’s most exciting and renowned artists, which are currently being erected all over the city, creating a sense of spectacle and anticipation, as people look forward to exploring the artworks in their final glowing forms.

These awe-inspiring illuminations will form a trail of 9 light-based installations, which will be placed around the city centre for visitors to discover, be immersed by, and enjoy.

The festival promises to showcase illuminated art from some of the world’s leading ‘light’ artists, with many of the pieces being brought to the city for the first time.

Pulse, by Somerset based artists This is Loop, will be located at St. Peter’s Square in the Highcross shopping centre. This will feature a huge tunnel of light and sound roughly the size of an articulated lorry.

It’s tightly synchronised pulses of light are triggered by a mesmerizing soundtrack, creating an immersive and unforgettable experience for visitors.

Simon Jenner, Director of BID Leicester said “Watching each of the pieces begin to come to life is incredibly exciting.

Welcoming world-renowned artists to the city is a fantastic accolade for Leicester too.

Visitors will be able to experience Fantastic Planet, a large-scale work by Amanda Parer consisting of giant, inflatable, glowing human sculptures that seem to have just landed on earth.

The piece will be a showstopper that will give audiences a moment of wonder.

We’re thrilled to build on the success of the last festival in 2020 and to continue bringing events like these to the city centre.

We’re expecting audiences of over 70,000 to attend, which is a fantastic boost for local businesses as well.”

There will also be the opportunity for people in Leicester to experience art installations created by local artists, which will be exhibited at a brand-new art space on Churchgate called BETA X called ‘The Light Café’.

A venue showing light works by local artists Andy Harper & Leonie DuBarry-Gurr, Joe Moran, Paul Mazzitelli, Tony Coleman, and Sean Clark.

The Light Café will also be hosting light sculptures made by pupils at local schools, plus a gallery of pictures of work made in the workshops and by people at home.

There are lots of ways that the public can get involved and enjoy the festival, including a limited number of free ebikes for hire, guided accessible group bike rides for all abilities and workshops taking place at The Light Café.

City Mayor Peter Soulsby said: "Light Up Leicester is the latest addition to the city's growing programme of innovative events and I'm delighted that we've been able to bring it back this year."

These playful installations will light up the dark winter evenings until Sunday (March 6), transforming familiar city centre spaces with some spectacular illuminated artworks.

"We're very grateful to Arts Council England for supporting this event, and I hope that people will enjoy following the city centre trail and discovering all nine of these extraordinary installations."

The return of this incredibly popular and memorable festival will be a great addition to Leicester’s cultural calendar and an event that will hopefully light the way for a great year ahead across the city.

Light Up Leicester is presented by Leicester City Council, BID Leicester and ArtReach.


Written by Aimee Culverhouse

Currently interning for Niche Magazine, Aimee is keen to grow her portfolio in journalism whilst studying her Master’s degree at De Montfort University, in Fashion Management with Marketing. She enjoys writing about upcoming events, sustainable fashion and retail.