Last year, inspired by the all-night Nuit Blanche celebrations of art in Paris, Santa Monica and other cities around the world, artist Shane Pennington and partner Joshua King decided Dallas deserved its own version, so they created Aurora and set it in Dallas Heritage Village. Installations projected colorful lights and video against the antique structures in a compelling contrast. “It was just magical,” he said of the inaugural fete. “It was a packed house and really amazing seeing all this technical artwork with the old buildings.” This year, as the event grows, Aurora 2011 will be set in the Dallas Arts District and has drawn dozens of artists from around the world, whose works range from light and video conceptual pieces to a series of picnic tables painted by Booker T. Washington students to Pennington’s own Everything and Emptiness, a two-part installation featuring a video component and music he is composing with Cathedral Guadalupe carillonneur Carol Anne Taylor. Inspired by Toronto’s version of Nuit Blanche, which he says accounts for 45 percent of the city’s tourism each year, Pennington hopes for the Dallas event to eventually become an all-night multi-venue affair spread throughout the city — ideally including places like Oak Cliff, Fair Park, the Cedars and NorthPark Center. For now, though, Aurora 2011 is more limited in its time and place, running from 7:30 p.m. to midnight in the Dallas Arts District (centered on the intersection of Routh and Flora streets). Visit dallasaurora.com for more information, including a full list of participating artists.
Fri., Oct. 28, 7:30 p.m.-midnight, 2011