Fringe Illuminations | Lighting Up North Terrace in the Most Breathtaking Way | Review |12 to 28 Feb 2016

Fringe Illuminations 2016 Art Gallery

See the iconic buildings of North Terrace transformed into living canvases of light.

One of our all-time favourite festival events is the Northern Lights Illumination as part of the Adelaide Festival in March 2010. The historic buildings along North Terrace looked absolutely glorious lit up in the evenings. See our pics here. We’ve been hoping this would return, so are very excited our wish has been granted.

Fringe Illuminations 2016 (8)

What is the Fringe Illuminations?

Adelaide’s cultural boulevard will be re-imagined with colour and movement for the first two weeks of Adelaide Fringe (12 – 28 February 2016), with the State Library, the South Australian Museum, the Art Gallery of South Australia and University of Adelaide buildings illuminated by architecturally mapped projections.

Fringe Illuminations 2016 (10)

Fringe Illuminations 2016 (9)

A very moving Kaurna country and culture ceremony on the lawns of the Museum launched the Fringe Illuminations on Friday night on a gorgeous Adelaide evening. The Paitya Cultural Group powerfully depicted ancient Kaurna stories with fire and dance and then ignited a spark of spectacular light onto the Mortlock Wing that, along with the Institute Building will carry the beautifully lit stories until 28 February 2016. Dreaming Light, is the largest ever architectural projection art project in South Australia involving Aboriginal storytelling.

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The Kaurna stories depicted so beautifully on the walls is a wonderful way to show children a little bit about the oldest living culture in the world.

Adelaide Fringe Director and CEO Heather Croall said she was eager to see Adelaide sparkle for the 2016 Fringe.
“This spectacular art installation on our beautiful buildings along North Terrace will be the perfect event to enjoy between Fringe shows. The cultural boulevard will become a major route for Fringe-goers to travel between venues and marvel at the incredible Illuminations,” said Croall.

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The animated content in the Fringe Illuminations reflect the activities within the buildings. You’ll also see a tribute to all the years of the Fringe on the State Library walls.

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Fringe Illuminations 2016 (4)

All along North Terrace there are grassy areas and plenty of benches to sit on to rest and admire the projections. Our kids always love this boulevard – they find so much to do here. There are water features in front of the buildings from the State Library to the Art Gallery – if your kids are drawn to water be prepared and perhaps bring a change of clothes – they will probably get wet. There are leaves and sticks to find, to make ‘boats’; little trails in the gardens to run around and plenty of steps and benches to climb.

Fringe Illuminations nature play

You may like to take some ‘camouflage photos’ with the kids standing against the coloured walls. With the brightly lit buildings and vivid animations, North Terrace takes on a magical atmosphere. It’s a totally free event and something for all ages to enjoy.

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If you have little ones, just remember that there is no fencing along the road but the footpath/walkway is very wide and there is a distance between the buildings and North Terrace. It is at night of course and can be dark in places, plus there are bushes and structures where a little person could be hard to find if they wander. It’s a great environment to explore though and kids love it. I would recommend perhaps a 1:1 ratio of adult to child if you have young children, especially if they like to play hide and seek, or are ‘runners’. If you need to use a toilet there should be a public toilet at the War Memorial corner of North Terrace and Kintore Avenue, although there are works happening there currently and may not be easily accessible. Otherwise there is Hungry Jacks on the corner of Pulteney Street and Rundle Street (shhh.. you didn’t hear that from us).

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It is a shame that it is a late night activity if you have little ones – 8.30pm is usually after the kids’ bedtime. However, I do remember taking my 18 month old son to the Northern Lights Illumination in 2010. While I thought it would be way too late and tiring for him, and he may sleep in the stroller, he was absolutely in awe of the projections and totally loved it – no sleeping and no meltdowns.

Fringe Illuminations 2016 Bonython Hall

This is a must see spectacle for the Fringe this year. I wish they would do this every year!

For more information about the event see our post here.

Find out about Adelaide Fringe family friendly shows here and Adelaide Fringe free events here. Or for all things Fringe, click here.


For more information and all enquiries about Fringe Illuminations please visit the Adelaide Fringe website.

What: Fringe Illuminations | Review

When: Friday 12 February to Sunday 28 February 2016 | 8.30pm to 1am

Where: North Terrace, Adelaide

Who: Everyone

At Play & Go Adelaide we make every effort to provide accurate information to the best of our knowledge at the time of publication. We recommend confirming times, dates and details directly before making any plans as details may be subject to change.

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