BIG CITY LIGHTS* festival unveils inaugural program

A brand new arts festival that will light up Southport from 7-10 July has today announced a jam-packed program.

Gold Coasters can expect four mesmerising nights of light, colour and creativity at BIG CITY LIGHTS*, with stunning immersive audio-visual experiences, large-scale digital works, 3D-mapping and so much more.

The city’s CBD will feature hypnotic displays by leading local, national and international artists and companies including Michaela Gleave (NSW), Buchan Group (National), Jacob Leary (TAS), IKONIX (QLD), Claudio Kirac (QLD), Kirsten Baade (QLD) and Peter Thiedeke (UK / QLD) to name a few.


There will be five art zones to explore too, with rooftops, building facades, alleyways, carparks and shopfronts across Nerang Street, Scarborough St, Young Street, Regent Lane and Davison Lane to come alive with colourful creations.

Mr P.P.’s Deli & Rooftop, Vinnie’s Dive Bar and Last Night on Earth will also be home to special installations as well as a vibrant line-up of live music programming.

Iridescence by Ikonix to feature at BIG CITY LIGHTS*. PHOTO: Supplied

Here are some of the program highlights:

  • Multi-disciplinary artist, Jacob Leary will present EXCESSSSSSCAPE at the Hutong Garden in Davison Lane. His work intertwines sculpture, video and painting to create a technicolour, moving piece of art set to mesmerize audiences.
  • Michaela Gleave’s FEAR EATS THE SOUL is reminiscent of an abandoned theme park ride or a decaying sign from a forgotten horror film. The five-minute electrical glitch loop, which appears in Regent Lane is set to be amongst one of the most talked about installations of the festival.
  • The award-winning creative team from Buchan Group, who have featured countless works as part of Vivid Sydney over the last decade, will transform part of Davison Lane with their work DANCING PARTICLES, using infrared sensors to scan audience participants and project them onto buildings. Don’t miss your chance to be in the spotlight.

CEO of Placemakers* Gold Coast and BIG CITY LIGHTS* Artistic Director Rosie Dennis said she is incredibly proud to be launching BIG CITY LIGHTS* on the Gold Coast.

“At its heart, BIG CITY LIGHTS* asks us to reconsider our relationship with urban and public spaces through large-scale visual art, lane-way activations and breathtaking installations. Come once and come again,” she said.

Major Events Gold Coast CEO Jan McCormick said BIG CITY LIGHTS* will be a fantastic addition to the city’s cultural events calendar.

“There isn’t a city in the country better suited to host an event like BIG CITY LIGHTS*, our incredible skyline already shines bright, and this exhibition will extend that spectacle across to Southport with four mesmerising nights not to miss,” she said.

“We have seen the crowds that VIVID and White Night draw into Sydney and Melbourne, and we’re confident this festival will do the same, attracting thousands of out-of-region visitors to the Gold Coast growing year on year.”

BIG CITY LIGHTS* will take over Southport from 7-10 July 2022. For more information, and to view the full festival program, visit: