Illuminate Bathurst Events

Esem Projects was selected to produce Illuminate Bathurst in 2015, a series of three events marking the 200th Bicentennial of Bathurst.

Project Details

Illuminate Bathurst was a series of events commissioned by Bathurst Regional Council to mark the Bicentenary in 2015. The program proved successful in bringing together diverse communities within the central precinct of Bathurst and has evolved since this year to become the Bathurst Winter Festival.


Michael Killalea: Creative Director Leif Wilson: Audio-visual installation Anna Fraser: Motion Graphics Mike Daly: Motion Graphics Gary Sinclair: Sound

The project brings a series of digital projections into the heart of Bathurst, lighting up the city’s beautiful built heritage and creating spaces for playful interactions. The installations feature a mix of colour, light, and stories that reflect the unique identity of Bathurst: past, present, and future.

Part 1 launched the series, and reflected on the evolution of place & time in Bathurst, from dreamtime motifs, Wiradyuri 'place names' and symbols, to the arrival of western mechanised time and forms of historical documentation and the different manifestations of wealth and power (of which the Courthouse building itself is one).

We worked with local Wiradjuri elders and community groups in the realisation of this piece. The soundscape integrates percussion from the Mckillop Girls High, choir performance from Bathurst's Panorama Chorus, and guitar by local composer Aaron Hopper.

The first launch festival included a number of additional activations around town, laneways and empty shopfronts & windows were canvases for interactive installations reflecting in different ways on Bathurst's history.

A particular highlight for us was working with the Holtermann Collection recently digitised by the State Library of NSW, and the incredible support we received from local community groups, schools and artists.

This Bicentennial initiative was commissioned by Bathurst Regional Council through Bathurst 200.

Part 2 saw the first Bathurst Winter Festival, as Bathurst's most imposing facades were transformed into magical wonderlands, while some forgotten characters found new homes in once lonely laneways. Even temperatures plummeting as low as -6°C did not deter large mid-winter crowds from gathering, interacting and participating - and they loved the silent discos!


Illuminate Bathurst 2


Illuminate Bathurst 3



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