Spectacular light festival to bring Expo 2020 Dubai site to life, celebrating visual arts, culture and collaboration

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  • Light sculptures, art projections and installations to connect people and cultures
  • Visitor experience to feature inspiring stories and support meaningful initiatives 
  • Leading UAE photographic contest to provide stunning imagery for light festival

Dubai: Kaleidoscope, a stunning outdoor night-time light festival, will bring Expo 2020 Dubai’s site to life for the mega-event’s entire six months, from incredible structures designed by superstars of the architecture world, such as Asif Khan, Foster + Partners, Grimshaw, and Hopkins Architects, to its landscaped public areas. 

Across 182 visually striking and emotionally inspiring nights, Kaleidoscope will harness the beauty of photography, light and visual arts. The festival will connect with Expo 2020’s impactful initiatives and global entertainment, including Diwali and Christmas, to tell powerful stories in immersive ways.

The Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum International Photography Awards (HIPA) is providing much of the light show’s imagery and has been specially chosen to link to Expo’s subthemes of Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability using imagery from HIPA’s archive, which stretches back to its founding in 2011.

Grant Reid, Vice President, Events and Entertainment, Expo 2020 Dubai, said: “While the past 18 months have been unprecedently challenging, we believe that collaboration can inspire a better future – something we hope to highlight in our light show. A kaleidoscope is symbolic: once shaken, it shows something new but equally beautiful; and light has the power to conquer darkness.

“Through Kaleidoscope, our subthemes – Opportunity, Mobility and Sustainability – will be vividly brought to life, reminding us of their relevance now more than ever before.”

Alongside showcasing Expo’s subthemes, dynamic programming and the power of human connection, the light festival will also offer a self-guided visitor experience, with provisions made for social distancing.

Running from 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022, Expo 2020 will unite more than 200 participants, including 191 countries, as well as businesses, multilateral organisations and educational institutions, with the shared purpose of solving some of the world’s greatest challenges, such as the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It will invite millions of visitors from across the planet to join the making of a new world during a six-month celebration of human ingenuity, innovation, progress and culture.

About Expo 2020 Dubai:

From 1 October 2021 to 31 March 2022, Expo 2020 Dubai will welcome visitors from every corner of the globe to join the making of a new world, as it brings together the planet in one place to reimagine tomorrow.

  • With the purpose of ‘Connecting Minds, Creating the Future’, Expo 2020 will be the world’s most impactful global incubator for new ideas, catalysing an exchange of new perspectives and inspiring action to deliver real-life solutions to real-world challenges
  • Expo 2020 will be the biggest cultural gathering in the world, presenting a visually striking and emotionally inspiring 182 days, as more than 200 participants – including nations, multilateral organisations, businesses, and educational institutions, as well as millions of visitors – create the largest and most diverse World Expo ever
  • Expo 2020’s sub-themes of OpportunityMobility and Sustainability will inspire visitors to preserve and protect our planet, explore new frontiers and build a better future for everyone
  • For six months, Expo 2020 will be a must-visit family destination, with thousands of events, amazing exploratory experiences, and free entry for children up to age 18
  • Expo is committed to building a more equitable and just world for everyone, while keeping visitors safe by following the latest guidance of the world’s leading medical, science and health experts
  • Expo 2020 is the first World Expo to take place in the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA) region, located on a 4.38 sqkm site adjacent to Al Maktoum International Airport in Dubai South 
  • Built with a meaningful and measurable long-term legacy in mind, the Expo site will transform into District 2020 – a model global community that will rethink the cities of the future – after Expo 2020 closes its doors

How to cover Expo 2020 Dubai in person at event time or report on the event remotely

To attend Expo 2020 or cover Expo 2020 remotely using content and assets generated by Expo, you must be accredited. 

To kick off your journey with Expo 2020, please ensure that you:

1. Register to access our Media Information System, Tawassul at https://media.expo2020dubai.com.

Tawassul is regularly updated, providing the latest content assets, including press releases, photographs, audio and video, the electronic media kit, and information on broadcast and photography operations. It also provides you with important information and updates on facilities and services such as media accreditation, visa information for international accredited media, and permits. Access to other media-related systems (Media Asset Management System and Media Bookings System), which will be launched in Q2 2021, will only be permitted to accredited media (see below). Information about these systems can be found on Tawassul.

2. Once registered, submit an Expo 2020 Media Accreditation expression of interest. 

Within this expression of interest, please appoint an Accreditation Liaison Officer (ALO) from within your organisation who will act as the single point of contact with Expo 2020 for media accreditation. Following this, approved media organisations will be provided login details and instructions for the accreditation system to enable them to submit applications.

About World Expos:

In 1851 the Crystal Palace was the centrepiece of London’s Great Exhibition – the first World Expo. It celebrated the man-made industrial wonders of a rapidly changing world. Architecture, contents and a theme, ‘Industry of All Nations’, were combined to create a big idea of nations meeting nations in shared technological and commercial progress. In more recent years, participants in World Expos, including governments, international organisations and companies, have gathered to find solutions to universal challenges and to promote their achievements, products, ideas, innovations, their national brand, and their nations as destinations for tourism, trade and investment. 
World Expos are held under the auspices of the Bureau International des Expositions (BIE), the intergovernmental organisation responsible for overseeing and regulating international exhibitions (‘Expos’) and for fostering their core values of Education, Innovation and Cooperation. Today, four types of Expos are organised under the BIE’s auspices: World Expos, Specialised Expos, Horticultural Expos and the Triennale di Milano.