If you’d told me 10 years ago Calgarians would willingly line up more than half-an-hour to experience a shower of light, I wouldn’t have believed you — and I would have been wrong.
There I was, just one of hundreds (maybe even thousands?) of people who patiently queued up this past weekend to experience a piece of modern art called Light Shower, part of Glow: Downtown Winter Light Festival, an interactive, multi-disciplinary, multi-location display of modern art in Calgary.
You often hear complaints about public art being inaccessible, both figuratively and literally, but from what I witnessed this weekend, it can safely be said Glow was just the opposite. While not every piece was a smashing success, people seemed to keep an open mind about what they were seeing, based on fragments of conversations overheard as I wandered from installation to installation.
On top of it all, it was awesome to see so many people — including families with young children — out enjoying our downtown core well into the evening.
With hope, this event will make a comeback for many years to come … and given Glow’s apparent success, perhaps now’s the time to introduce more of such events, to breathe some life into Calgary central business district outside business hours.