Illumine [verb]: Light up or brighten; enlighten (someone) spiritually or intellectually
Over the course of four spring evenings from May 9 to May 12, visitors will be able to see Oakland Cemetery in a new light. Illumine 2019 at historic Oakland Cemetery is a creatively and artfully lighted self-guided walking tour that promises to be ethereal, unique, and memorable.
The overriding theme of Illumine 2019 is to literally shine a light on many of the untold stories of Atlanta’s history as they play out within the cemetery’s walls, focusing in on how the bones of more than a thousand African Americans were relocated from Slave Square, the 1,500 unmarked graves in the North Public Grounds, and the histories of the cemetery’s Original Six Acres and the Beaumont Allen Greenhouse.
Headstones, mausoleums, flowers, trees, and buildings will be innovatively lit with lightboxes, lanterns, projections, sound, and balloons to showcase Oakland’s exquisite spring gardens along with HOF’s restoration efforts there.
“We’re excited to build upon the successes and lessons learned from Illumine 2016 and last year’s award-winning Golden Hour exhibition to bring Oakland Cemetery to life with creative and artistic lighting this Spring,” said Richard Harker, Director of Programming at Historic Oakland Foundation.
It is a thrill for visitors to be in this great garden cemetery at night and a pleasure for us to be able to provide a unique experience for our visitors see the history and beauty of this place in new and original ways.
Illumine 2019 is a creative collaborative project of HOF staff, friends, and volunteers, led by the event’s Creative Director, Cooper Sanchez. “It is a thrill for visitors to be in this great garden cemetery at night and a pleasure for us to be able to provide a unique experience for our visitors see the history and beauty of this place in new and original ways,” said Sanchez, who is also an artist and gardener at Oakland Cemetery, responsible for a number of beautiful artistic experiences at Oakland in the last decade. “I am so excited for the return of Illumine and am sure that it will be one of the most unique experiences in Atlanta this spring.”
In the weeks leading up to Illumine, stay connected to Oakland’s website and social media for previews and behind-the-scenes looks at Illumine 2019, including the history and stories behind some of the event’s signature elements.
Illumine 2019 tickets go on sale to the general public on March 4 at 9:00 a.m. Learn more.