Experienced travellers to Sydney know that now is always a good time to visit. To take in some of its most memorable landmarks or tuck into its diverse lifestyle offerings, which include top-notch entertainment and some of Australia’s best dining. But, from May 23 right through to Jun 17, visitors will get to experience the city’s uniquely creative buzz. Hailed as its largest festival of light, music and ideas, Vivid Sydney returns with more to offer.
Produced by Destination NSW (New South Wales), the event will, quite literally, transform the city into a creative space, complete with light installations and projections to illuminate its iconic buildings and locations. These will include new precinct Barangaroo, as well as favourites such as Martin Place, Darling Harbour and Taronga Zoo.
And, while it remains one of the city’s main daytime attractions, come nightfall, the Sydney Opera House’s iconic sails will be used as canvas for a series of imaginary creatures by acclaimed cinematographer and graphic designer Ash Bolland, in collaboration with content house Spinflex. Dubbed Audio Creatures, the animation’s accompanying soundtrack will also feature music by musician and electronic music producer, Amon Tobin.
Should you, however, find yourself over at the Harbour foreshore, The Vivid Light Walk, from around The Rocks, Circular Quay and through to The Royal Botanic Garden Sydney, will take you past 70 installations, including the interactive Never Ends, a magic horse you can ride; and the Human Light Clock, which turns visitors shadows into the hand that tells the time.
Speaking of timely inspirations, the buildings, malls, streets and laneways of Chatswood CBD will be reinvented using installations and light sculptures inspired by the Steampunk design aesthetic of 19th-century steam-powered machinery.
Other festival highlights include performances by British singer-songwriter Laura Marling and Australian hit-maker Nick Murphy at the Sydney Opera House. These make up an excess of 400 gigs that will take place as part of its Vivid Music programme, stretched across more than 40 venues and an expanded array of musical genres, from blues to retro revival rock, to alt-country, jazz, hip hop and house. Leading this year’s Vivid Ideas line-up is American contemporary artist Shepard Fairey, best known for his Hope poster, We The People protest images and his Obey apparel range.
That being said, this year’s festival is family-friendly, and not only where preschoolers are concerned. Tweens and teenagers, for instance, will enjoy Vivid Ideas’ Rhodes: Creative in Rhodes, where they can interact, dance and learn with humanoid robots called “NAO-bots”. Or, perhaps, join one of several workshops and talks on 3D printing, robotics, wearable art and tech.
How’s that for an inspired reason to swing by this school holidays?
Visit www.vividsydney.com for more information.
This article first appeared on sg.asiatatler.com.