Seven Art Installations to Light Up Tampa during Lights on Tampa 2015

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The City of Tampa announces the seven art installations chosen to be exhibited in Tampa during Lights on Tampa 2015, which will be held in and around Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park in downtown Tampa on February 20-21, 2015.

"Lights on Tampa is a signature festival for Tampa, and the 2015 event is going to be bigger and better. Thank you to all the local businesses who have stepped up to support the effort," said Mayor Bob Buckhorn.  “Internationally acclaimed artists are going to light up Tampa and make our city shine that much brighter.”                  

Since its inception in 2006, Lights On Tampa has, through either direct involvement or influence, created an ambiance in downtown Tampa. Over $2.5 million in private development has been invested into Tampa’s downtown for permanent light-based art work.

Artwork chosen for Lights on Tampa 2015 is diverse, engaging, and multi-disciplinary, using new technologies, music, dance, and the literary arts.

The 2015 slate of artists is as follows:

Title: Sky Striker

Artist / Designer:​​ Traction Architecture (Tampa)

Installation location: Rivergate Tower

Sky Striker is an interactive urban experience that transforms Tampa’s iconic Rivergate Tower into a giant carnival game. An old-fashioned "high striker" machine will be located in Kiley Garden, and participants will be challenged to step right up and test their strength by striking the base of the machine with a mallet. As the puck shoots up, the High Striker machine, Rivergate Tower, will simultaneously light up, its rings of lights broadcasting the strength of each participant across Tampa’s skyline. Whether driving on the Crosstown Expressway or standing outside University of Tampa, the Sky Striker experience will be shared across the city. The installation taps into collective childhood memories of carnivals and harkens back to the historic site of the Florida State fairgrounds across the River.

To view or download a rendering of Sky Striker, please visit

Title: HEARD, FL

Artist:​​​​ Nick Cave (Chicago)

Installation location: Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park

Internationally recognized performance artist and sculptor Nick Cave is bringing a herd of thirty colorful life-size horses to Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park. HEARD is a choreographed performance that brings local dancers and musicians together, some in costume, capturing both light and the imagination.

To view an image of HEARD NYC, please visit

To watch HEARD NYC perform in Grand Central Station, please visit

Title: Glowing River

Artist / Designer:​​ Wannemacher Jensen Architects (St. Petersburg)

Installation location: Kennedy segment of the Tampa Riverwalk

Glowing River is an underwater installation that is intended to draw patrons to the Tampa Riverwalk and invite them to participate and interact with the installation in two ways. The first will be via a strong of motion detectors along the path triggering a color change in the water alongside the patron over the course of their walk. Patrons will engage in play changing their path, walking back and forth to trigger a change. The second interaction will be the fish and wildlife. Underwater lighting attracts fish and casts their shadows on the surface. This installation will bring awareness to the existence of urban wildlife and therefore the potential man made effects on their local environment.

To view or download a rendering of Glowing River, please visit

Title: Recurrence

Artist:​​​​ Luftwerk (Chicago)

Installation location: Kiley Garden

Recurrence is a light art installation that evokes the tidal flow of the Hillsborough River. This elegant artwork will be installed in Kiley Garden, and will mirror the Fibonacci grid of the garden.  A grid of lights will flow in a compressed rhythm to the tides of the Hillsborough River.

To view or download a rendering of Recurrence, please visit

Title: UpLit

Artist / Writer:  ​​To be determined

Installation location: Northwest corner of Kiley Garden

A simple phrase can capture the essence of something or some place; it can elude, evoke, suggest and inspire. Encountering a phrase or words out of context in the streets of a city park can also invite the passer-by to remember a story, give the element of surprise, start a conversation, bring a smile or encouragement, make a memory. It can invite us in, but into what we may not be exactly sure. This project recognizes the value of the written word and invites readers, poets, writers—professional and amateur alike—to submit a phrase that captures how we live now and what that means.  A panel of jurors including noted Tampa Author Tim Dorsey selected a phase to be “put in lights.” 

To view a rendering of UpLit, please visit

Title: Urban Pixels

Artist / Designer: ​​The Urban Conga (Tampa)

Installation location: Moveable

Urban Pixels is series of lighted shapes or forms that can function as movable lawn furniture or perhaps as a building block to make something else. This kit of parts encourages interaction and play.

To view or download a rendering of Urban Pixels, please visit

Title: Shadow Plays

Artist / Designer:​​ Community

Installation location: Curtis Hixon Waterfront Park

Shadow Plays first debuted at Lights On Tampa 2011 and is returning by popular demand! This unique stage platform makes music and dance an up close, interactive, and engaging experience.

To view photos of Shadow Plays at Lights on Tampa 2011, please visit


Lights on Tampa 2015 is a public-private partnership,  developed  by the City of Tampa Art Programs Division and supported by regional businesses and grant funding, including the National Endowment for the Arts, PNC Bank, Sykes, Shumaker Loop & Kendrick, Casper’s Company, Tampa Bay Times, Brighthouse Networks, Clear Channel Outdoor, David A. Straz Center for the Performing Arts and other private sponsors. Lights on Tampa 2015 is currently in the development phase, and seeks additional support.

To find out more about available sponsorship opportunities, please contact Robin Nigh at or 813-274-8531.

About Lights on Tampa

The Lights On Tampa program was developed by the City of Tampa’s Art Programs Division, in conjunction with regional businesses, volunteers, and art supporters. It was an ambitious project that sought to reaffirm Tampa’s commitment to arts and technology by presenting highly visible, innovative light installations created by juried artists. It began in January 2006, and has had successful light-based installations and festivals in 2006, 2009, 2011, 2012, and now, 2015. The Program has been nationally recognized as one of the fifty most influential public art programs in the last fifty years by Americans for the Arts.  To find out more about the program, please visit

For additional information, please contact: 

Ali Glisson, Public Affairs Director
(813) 274-8262