Luminaria Shines in 2012

Original Creative Works Light Up Downtown San Antonio

By Ellie Leeper
Photography By

Light up the night, San Antonio, with the fifth annual Luminaria: Arts Come to Light festival that is slated for March 2012 at HemisFair Park in the heart of downtown. Named after the Spanish word that means “white night,” Luminaria is an arts celebration modeled after a concept in Paris that brings contemporary art to the masses in public spaces while inspiring dialogue and engaging the public to examine its significance and impact on public space.

San Antonio’s Luminaria features the collaboration of over 50 artists and non-profit arts organizations, showcasing pieces from six artistic disciplines: music, dance, media arts (film), literary arts, theater and visual arts from artists both in San Antonio as well as across the country. Every work displayed or performed in this one-day artistic extravaganza must stay true to the theme of light, much like the festivals ‘Glow’ in Santa Monica, and ‘Nuit Blanche’ in Paris.

“Luminaria began as a way to foster a sense of community by celebrating the arts, and recognizing and advancing artists’ careers,” says Richard Rosen, the artistic director of Luminaria. Luminaria was an idea conceived by former San Antonio Mayor Phil Hardberger, who launched the event in 2008. Since then, it has elevated San Antonio’s profile to a city known worldwide for the arts, as the festival has improved significantly and grown annually.

The open call for Luminaria pieces began in San Antonio in November 2011, and artists have been diligently working since then. Last year’s Luminaria attracted over 310,000 attendees in just one day, and the event is expected to attract an even larger crowd this year. For more information on this event, visit