BRILLIANT ideas wanted!

Posted 01/08/2021

Lumiere 2021 commissioning scheme is now open for applications.


BRILLIANT is your chance to become a Lumiere artist this year!

Lumiere, the UK’s leading light festival, returns to Durham from 18th to 21st November 2021. Over four magical evenings, we will transform the city with spectacular art installations made using light.

BRILLIANT is a commissioning scheme aimed at encouraging anyone (aged 18 or older) to suggest their brightest idea for a new light-based artwork as part of the Lumiere 2021 programme.

We want people to apply with their brightest idea for an artwork. Anyone can apply – you don’t need to be working as an artist!

In an exciting development of this £50,000 scheme, the invitation has now been extended to the whole of the UK, encouraging the nations to unleash their creative potential. There will be up to six awards available, of which three will be ring-fenced for those originally from or living in the North East as part of Artichoke’s ongoing commitment the development of local creativity.

Successful applicants receive:

  • A fee
  • Technical support from an Artichoke Producer and Production Manager to realise their BRILLIANT idea
  • Ongoing mentoring and advice
  • Production/materials/fabrication/installation costs

Applications will close at 9am on Thursday 11 February 2021.

All the information on how to take part, including an information pack available in accessible formats and the application form can be found at here.

To date twenty-one BRILLIANT artworks have been shown across the previous editions of Lumiere Durham, which have attracted over 1 million visitors. Successful artists have made work using recycled objects, glass washed up from the ocean and supersized everyday objects including knitting needles, desk lamps and a Slinky.

To broaden the diversity of those working in the medium of light art, Artichoke are encouraging applications from those who identify as d/Deaf and Disabled, and Black People and People of Colour.

“We are delighted to open up BRILLIANT to the whole country – we want as many people as possible to dazzle us with their ideas. Light art has traditionally been dominated by white, male, non-disabled artists and we want to help change this by providing the financing, mentorship and technical support necessary for anyone with a great idea for an artwork to make it a reality.”

Helen Marriage, Director of Artichoke

“BRILLIANT is a fantastic opportunity for people in the North East, and now the whole of the UK, to have their work featured in the UK’s most prestigious light art festival. Lumiere gives them a stage on which to showcase their work to tens of thousands of people, and in many cases has acted as a stepping stone into a full-time career as an artist.”

Councillor Simon Henig, Leader of Durham County Council

Lumiere is made possible through the support of commissioning body Durham County Council, Arts Council England and a host of funders and supporters. The 2021 BRILLIANT scheme is being sponsored by EMG Solicitors, a growing firm based in Durham that has supported Lumiere since 2017.