“BD is LIT” returns, brightening up Bradford’s district as the nights grow longer. This bi-annual light festival takes place throughout October and November.
On Bonfire weekend, Friday the 3rd and Saturday the 4th of November, “BD is LIT” will illuminate the City Centre. This year, ten new light installations will make their debut, with the full programme set to be unveiled in October.
The bi-annual light programme, “BD is LIT,” is back for October and November, featuring a festival weekend in the City Centre on the 3rd and 4th of November 2023. For this year’s event, Bradford Council, in collaboration with Bradford 2025, the UK City of Culture, The Leap, and the Science and Media Museum have joined forces to commission a variety of local and national artists. Together, they will create new, vibrant, and impactful light artworks that will illuminate Bradford.
This year’s commissions will shed light on topics like sustainability and the celebration of local heritage. While the full programme will be disclosed in October, the team is excited to announce some of the local artists and installations that residents can anticipate seeing across the district:
Local artist Letty McHugh will bring “Joy in Unexpected Places” to Keighley, adorning often overlooked buildings with beautifully designed and crafted neon installations.
“The Bekun” by Fayakunu will grace the mirror pool during the weekend of November 3rd, 2023. Artist Kasim Tariq collaborates with local artisans to reconstruct the Lister Mills Chimney.
Summat Creatives’ “Speed of Light” brings together a team of inclusive artists and cyclists to transform an empty shop unit in Shipley, powered by energy pledges for a sustainable future.
The South Square Arts Centre’s annual “Winter Windows” programme will infuse festive cheer into windows across Thornton throughout November.
“Walk this way” is a site-specific light and music installation over Shipley Market, led by Dr. Rob Eagle.
“Window Vipers” is a distinctive installation that turns the windows of a city centre building into the classic Nokia game “SNAKE,” allowing the audience to play during the weekend of November 3rd.
Cllr Sarah Ferriby, Bradford Council’s Portfolio Holder for People and Places said: ‘We’re delighted that BD is LIT is back for its second iteration. It’s such a good alternative to Bonfire Night and with its multi-sensory offering – it is an opportunity to bring people together across the district, celebrate our spaces and shine a light on some of our unexpected places.”
In the upcoming weeks, “BD is LIT” will unveil the City Centre Festival programme for November 3rd and 4th, along with further details about district-wide programme dates and timings. They promise another spectacle of light, joy, and family fun, offering a delightful alternative to Bonfire Night.
This year’s “BD: is LIT” programme marks the first since Bradford secured the title of UK City of Culture 2025, with the Bradford 2025 team collaborating on this event.
Shanaz Gulzar, Creative Director at Bradford 2025 said: “With autumn nights bringing darker evenings, BD:is LIT allows us to explore our city and district in a new light. There are some incredibly exciting commissions this year that seek to surprise and delight residents while recognising the diversity and history of our city. It’s time to put the dates in your diary and start thinking about how you can experience all the great things that will appear across the district.”