What is Nocturne?

Nocturne: Art at Night is a fall festival that brings art and energy to the streets of K'jipuktuk/Halifax between 6 p.m. and midnight. The completely free annual event showcases and celebrates the visual arts scene in Mi'kma'ki/Nova Scotia. Nocturne, designed and planned largely by volunteers, is an opportunity for everyone to experience the art of K'jipuktuk/Halifax in a whole new light. Nocturne is a not-for-profit organization that works on building partnerships with the city and area businesses and government organizations to bring the city access to art and wonder with no barriers. Every year Nocturne works with a new curator to present a theme and Anchor Artists.

Geographically, Nocturne takes place within Mi’kma’ki, the ancestral and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq People. This territory is covered by the “Treaties of Peace and Friendship” which Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) people first signed with the British Crown in 1725. The treaties did not deal with surrender of lands and resources but in fact recognized Mi’kmaq and Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) title and established the rules for what was to be an ongoing relationship between nations.


Nocturne: Art at Night is the premier art experience in a thriving community.


Nocturne: Art at Night celebrates contemporary professional art in K’jipuktuk/Halifax. Through our festival and additional programming, we use art as a catalyst for connection.


The objective of the organization is to present critical and relevant art event(s) of a high artistic and professional standard that focuses on the strengths of the local art community which includes regional, national and international representation.

Core Values

Creative and Artistic Excellence


Diversity & Inclusion

Collaboration and Team Work



Nocturne 2019


The Halifax Regional Municipality is a city in transition. The past few years have seen the rapid upward expansion of the downtown core, the loss of some beloved historic spaces, and the addition of some less-loved new ones. Often, the structures designed to temporarily hold up the active assembly and disassembly of our infrastructure create a new version of our city - adding detours to our commutes, turning walking routes into a series of scaffolding tunnels, and speckling our skyline with cranes. This year’s Nocturne will embrace this time of change to reimagine the city with new materials, new ideals, and a sense of humour.

Scaffold asks artists to explore how temporary structures can be used to make a larger commentary on the social, physical and political structures that shape our lives. Who decides the purpose, form and design of our physical spaces? Who dictates the rules of how we behave within those spaces? We seek to question the power structures within the existence of our public spaces and examine accessibility and ownership. We invite artists to use humour, absurdity, and the unexpected to transform our streets into a new city. For one night only we present your vision of K'jipuktuk/Halifax. How bad could it go? It’s gone tomorrow.


Interested in being more than a spectator? Get Involved!