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November 15, 2016

9 New Light Art Works and More in This Year's Illuminate SF Festival of Light

Illuminate SF is an annual event and will be back next year! Check out our website for current events and festivals.

Celebrate San Francisco’s culture, creativity, innovation and brilliance during the 4th annual Illuminate SF Festival of Light. The 39-day celebration offers the rare opportunity to tour a stunning citywide gallery of light during the longest nights of the year— 35 light art works in all, with nine new this year, including iconic works in the new SFMOMA. Enjoy a brilliant mix of new and favorite light art tours, artist studio visits, Museum Saturdays, and a stargazing party in the Presidio during the longest nights of the year. The works come to life at dusk throughout 12 San Francisco neighborhoods with a brilliance that will turn any evening into an illuminating adventure, especially when combined with exploring San Francisco’s world-class restaurants, museums and cultural events. 

9 New Light Art Installations
Four of this year’s nine new installations featured in Illuminate SF Festival of Light can be found at the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, with one more just down the block in the W SF Hotel, also in the Yerba Buena neighborhood. Nearby in Mission Bay, two illuminated light art works grace Owens Street. Don’t miss the light-emitting geometrical sculpture duo newly installed at Patricia’s Green in Hayes Valley, or the light art “cloud” comprised of recomposed and projected video imagery installed at the entrance of the San Francisco Art Commission’s new gallery in the War Memorial Veterans Memorial Building.

  • the diagonal of May 25, 1963 (to Constantin Brancusi), Dan Flavin (1963), SFMOMA, 151 Third St.
  • "monument" for V. Tatlin, Dan Flavin (1969), SFMOMA, 151 Third St.
  • untitled (to Barnett Newman) two, Dan Flavin (1971), SFMOMA, 151 Third St.
  • Life Death/Knows Doesn't Know, Bruce Nauman (1983), SFMOMA, 151 Third St.
  • Model Art Map, Lisa Gemmiti (2013), W SF Hotel, 181 Third St.
  • Anima, Jim Sanborn (2006), Alexandria Real Estate Equities, 1700 Owens St.
  • Monarch, Cliff Garten (2015), Kaiser Permanente Medical Offices, 1600 Owens St.
  • Coalescence, Olivia Ting and Annette Jannotta (2016), SFAC Main Gallery, 401 Van Ness, Suite 126
  • Trillan & Dodo, Hybocozo: Yelena Filipchuk and Serge Beaulieu (2014), Patricia’s Green, Octavia Boulevard. between Hayes and Fell Streets

4 New Neon Light Tours and Talk 
Along with the popular annual free guided light art tours (register at, and self-guided itineraries for exploring San Francisco’s light art works on your own, this year features new ways to spend an evening under the neon glow with tour guides and longtime San Francisco residents Al Barna and Randall Ann Homan. Tours feature local history with architectural and graphic design insights to San Francisco’s unique legacy of neon signs (register at .

  • Nov. 26, 2016, 6 p.m. – Cow Hollow
  • Dec 3, 2016, 6 p.m. – Chinatown-Union Square
  • Dec. 10, 2016 – San Francisco Neon Survivors and Lost Icons Book Event, register here 
  • Dec. 17, 2016, 6 p.m. – Market-Mission-Castro

3 Free Guided Walking Tours, escorted by the Cultural Concierge
These ambassadors for the arts made their debut at Super Bowl City earlier this year decked out in steampunk-inspired, illuminated capes and hats.  During Illuminate SF Festival of Light, they will join the three free light art walking tours (register at

  • Dec. 1, 2016, 6 p.m. – North Beach, Embarcadero + Dogpatch Light Art Tour
  • Dec. 8, 2016, 6 p.m. – Central Market and Civic Center Light Art Tour 
  • Dec. 15, 2016, 6 p.m. – Yerba Buena Light Art Tour

Museum Saturdays  
Docent-led tours of light art within museums Saturdays in December. Check with museums directly for tour times and details.

    • Dec. 3, 17, 2016 at SFMOMA, 151 Third St.
    • Dec. 3, 4, 11, 2016 at de Young Museum, 50 Hagiwara Tea Garden Dr.
    • Dec. 3, 1 p.m., Three Masterpieces in Thirty Minutes, 2 p.m. Art and Architecture: Highlights of the de Young
    • Dec. 4, 1 p.m., Three Masterpieces in Thirty Minutes, 2 p.m. Art and Architecture: Highlights of the de Young
    • Dec. 11, 2 p.m., Art and Architecture: Highlights of the de Young
    • Dec. 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, 2016 at Contemporary Jewish Museum, 736 Mission St.
    • Dec. 3, 10, 17, 24, 31, 2016 at Yerba Buena Center for the Arts, 701 Mission St.

Stargazing Party in the Presidio
Perfect for families and everyone interested in seeing the universe through a telescope. The San Francisco Amateur Astronomers bring telescopes and amateur astronomers to guide you, unveiling some of the night sky's most interesting astronomical beauties. Bad weather cancels (register and find more info at

    • Dec. 3, 2016, 7 - 9 p.m. at the Presidio Main Parade Ground


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