Mayor Erin Thompson

The City of Onkaparinga is proud to present the rebranded Shimmer Festival of Photography for the sixth biennial year.

Shimmer celebrates the power of an image and lets you meet the creatives behind the lens.

I invite you to share in this year's diverse program, highlighting the works of over 60 photographers representing all walks of life and photographic abilities.

Cleverly programmed by our reference panel, Shimmer has been curated to reflect the ongoing quest for ‘the perfect shot’ from applications submitted from across the world.

Our council is well known for its dedication to supporting a diverse range of arts, hospitality and tourism opportunities and this year’s Shimmer Festival amalgamates all three to offer a range of experiences that highlights our city and unique homegrown hospitality.

This is an opportunity to feed your passion for photography and explore what Onkaparinga has to offer.

Take a walk through McLaren Vale to discover (Melissa Little) Botanical , or take a drive though our famed wine region to be moved by the intimate portraits of our signature artist Tony Kearney at McLaren Vale  Visitors Centre.

Or maybe see and be captivated by the sensitivity invoked in the work of Colleen Raven (Red Poles) while sampling the wines and foods of this extraordinary area.

You can also get involved in a workshop, learn a skill or hear firsthand from feature artists as they share their experience and stories at the Open Exposure photo forum. This free afternoon event brings industry and community together in a sociable and educational setting.

On your daily commute you'll see Shimmer across the City- a citywide installation which brings the arts into the everyday and features individual works by local and distant creatives.

In the event that the festival should need to remain fully digital due to government restrictions in 2020, the complete exhibition program will be available online right here on our new Shimmer micro-site.

I encourage you to explore this new website, enjoy the biography pages and get to know the contributing photographers.

Whether you experience the magic of Shimmer in real life or in in the virtual world, I warmly welcome you to Shimmer, and to our region.

Mayor Erin Thomson
City of Onkaparinga

Throughout the Covid-19 pandemic the arts and events teams have been working hard to sustain our ongoing support of artists amidst the terrible impact of cancellations, closures and the associated trauma suffered by the arts sector. When the lockdowns hit, we, like everyone were propelled into plan B mode to find ways to offer the festival as a digital experience and maintain our support of the participating artists in the event that the closures would be sustained. 

Whilst at the time of writing this, the threat seems to be slowly subsiding, we have maintained our planning to encompass the unexpected and present a new look online platform that both celebrates the photographers work as well as the artist behind the lens with the plan that digital and reality can converge to present a festival of both light and dark and in these strange times, surrender and thank fully resurrection. 

We would like to thank all the participating artists and venues for their continued support of this boutique arts festival understanding that commitments were forged through very trying and challenging times for all involved. We pay homage not only to the images and the ‘perfect shot‘ but to the perseverance and dedication to their craft by all the contributing creatives and similarly to the generous host venues (from cellar door to random wall), for without you there would be no reason to travel through our beautiful region to sample these incredible visions. 

Shimmer festival of photography is a member of the Asia Pacific Photoforum, a regional grouping of international photography festivals across NZ, Australia and Asia. Members comprise Ballarat, Chobi Mela, Fotografica Bogota, Guatephoto, Head On, Higashikawa, Obscura, Pingyao, Singapore.

The Asia Pacific Photoforum seeks to further the presence of photography across the Asia Pacific region as a medium for artistic expression and truthful dissemination of ideas and information in an increasingly globalising world.  View the website at

Asia Pacific Photoforum