cne lantern festival

This is what the CNE's new lantern festival looks like

For this year’s CNE, the world’s largest indoor silk lantern exhibition has arrived in Toronto.

The exhibit contains lanterns made by 90 Chinese artists out of 4,000 metres of synthetic silk and 55 metres of silk, illustrating the theme of the Silk Road through the people and places along it.

lantern festival

In a summer that’s been full of heat warnings in Toronto, a little time indoors in the dark surrounded by magical lanterns could be just what the doctor ordered.

lantern festival

We already know Toronto is obsessed with light art thanks to other festivals that have previously enjoyed success during less outdoors-y months.

lantern festival

The lanterns depict scenes from history and mythology, subjects ranging from Greek myth to fairy tales, ancient Chinese lore and wild animals.

lantern festival

It took 60 days just to construct the lanterns, and then another 60 for them to be transported from China to the CNE in eight shipping containers.

lantern festival

The constructions range from around the height of an average adult human to those towering up to the convention centre ceiling. Some “flying” lanterns are even suspended from the roof.

lantern festival

There’s even a simple maze, guarded by a lantern version of the legendary Minotaur.

lantern festival

Just 11 artists actually assembled the exhibit here in town, which will remain on display in the Enercare Centre for the duration of the CNE, from August 17 to September 3.

lantern festival

Lead photo by

Hector Vasquez


Join the conversation Load comments

Latest in Arts

Artists are transforming a Toronto neighbourhood with colourful works of art

Someone is driving around Toronto in a giant metal rat

The 10 most famous people from Toronto

Someone with a bag on their head has been giving away free art in Toronto

French bookstore reopens at new location in Toronto after nearly shutting down for good

Toronto's Princess of Wales Theatre reopening with innovative sound installation

An exhibition all about New York's iconic Studio 54 is coming to Toronto

Toronto's derelict malting silos are now being used for outdoor video screenings