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Light Up Your City

Creative souls in the top end have the opportunity to light up the city streets with the Darwin Council’s City Life Platform light box project.

By Tamara Hoiwe

Expressions of interest are open for two of the 2019 exhibition slots, which will see 10 artworks illuminated in eight light boxes around Darwin and the northern suburbs. 

Currently, Charles Darwin University (CDU) students have work displayed around town to showcase local artists and encourage a dialogue in the community.

CDU artist Megan Adams says the students created site-specific work that looked at the locations through a historic and environmental lens.

“Artworks have been created using the light boxes as windows to the past and present, telling Darwin’s stories, from the Bougainvillea Festival to WWII reflections and environmental messages of plastic-free coastal communities to historic Chinatown,” she says. 

“We have tried to capture the spirit of Darwin by producing striking artworks that hopefully become a talking point among locals.”

CDU lecturer and well-known local artist Sarah Pirrie says it’s been a great challenge for students, and is a wonderful opportunity for artists and curators. 

“I truly think this is one of the great initiatives from City of Darwin and I wish there were many more light boxes,” she says.

“The students got such a nice buzz seeing their work on that scale, and it’s only when it gets darker you see the greatness of it.”

The City Life Platform program began this year to help illuminate the city across three sites with purpose-built light boxes displaying four-month outdoor exhibitions throughout the year.

The artworks are visible between 5pm and 9am in the Smith Street Mall, on the Chinatown car park building and at Nightcliff Pool.

With a rich cultural history in Darwin, applicants should think about making reference to the history of the site, the local stories and life of the people who frequent the area, the cultural and linguistic diversity of Darwin or the surrounding built environment. 


Photo: Fiona Morrison

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