Artists flip switches on shining installations
The lights are on and "looking fantastic".
The weekend's free event was officially opened last night at a walking-tour preview for the sponsors of this year's 35 light and sound installations.
Organisers said a bit of light rain wouldn't stop the event and a safety-dependent weather announcement would be made on the Light Nelson Facebook page at 3pm each day.
Light Nelson Trust chairman Brian Riley said a mix of people had contributed to putting the installations together, from professional artists to electricians to a group of 30 children.
The artists had to have their installations in by 4.30pm yesterday which Riley said gave him time to make sure everything was in place.
"I went for a walk around about 3 o'clock and had about three or four people that hadn't turned up but they are here now."
Last night he declared the lit-up works were looking fantastic.
Riley said collaboration was crucial to the success of the event.
The cathedral had cancelled its Sunday service to make room for one of the installations, he said. He suspected artist Fleur Stewart's "kooky sheep" would be an audience favourite.
Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese said Light Nelson brought together all that was special about Nelson and gave the community something to celebrate in the middle of the winter. She hoped the council would continue to sponsor the event in the future.
"I encourage people to come out and enjoy the next few days and I am looking forward to seeing what our visitor numbers are like."
Artists Sue Garlick and Lynda Duncan have installed a garden of suspended terrariums.
Garlick said she appreciated the opportunity to showcase art in a public place. "I think the way they run it just seems to be artist-friendly and accessible."
Nina Kidson, 8, said "the telephone box", an interactive sound installation from photographer John-Paul Pochin, had been the best thing she had seen so far because she normally got "told off for squealing".
Light Nelson runs July 11 to 13 from 5.30-9.30pm. Installations are in Queen's Gardens, Albion Square and NMIT. Neon, an electronic band, performs at the Cathedral 5.30pm nightly. Entry is free.