“Shells on Shells”
Sydney May – June 2017 (14 photos)
Yes, it’s that time of the year again. Vivid Sydney has returned for its 9th year and this is the 6th consecutive year that I have photographed it. Running from 26 May until 17 June, it is now in its final week for 2017. This free festival has become a major travel and tourism event for Sydney with an estimated 2.3 million visitors to last year’s festival. I don’t know if they took account of me visiting on multiple nights last year though. 🙂
Once again, Vivid has returned to the Royal Botanic Gardens, next to the Sydney Opera House and it’s here that I’ll start my series of Vivid posts.
Artists: Francesco Cappuccio & Dutchanee Ongarjsiri
An orderly procession of potted sunflower sculptures harnesses solar energy during the day, then uses this energy to light up at night. Just as sunflowers respond directionally to light (heliotropism), so these sculptures repeatedly move as if following the sun.
Sunflowers are frequently associated with happiness, positivity and adoration: in Oriental cultures, sunflowers signify intelligence, strength, good luck and a long life.
Birds of Lumos
Artists: Renzo B. Larriviere & Simone Chua
The artists have made these two little birds representative of the rare Rowi species of kiwi, and their work is a comment on the importance of conservation and the protection of wildlife.
As visitors gather around them, Rowi and her chick come to life — glowing and pulsating different colours through their light globe bodies. If Rowi senses danger, she will go through a ‘charge’ sequence; her glow will dim for a few seconds to ‘charge up’ and then illuminate in an intense display of light. Unfortunately 95% of kiwi hatched in the wild are killed by introduced pests and predators. The Rowi kiwi (one of five kiwi species) is highly endangered, with a population of just 450 birds remaining.
THE BIG RED BUTTON
Artist: Joshua Wilkinson, Patrick Shirley & Daniel Thomas
Pressing a big red button triggers a projection mapping/sound design sequence and the bush bursts spectacularly into flames, burning until there is nothing left but charred black leaves and smoke.
The smoking remains stay that way until another participant steps up to press the button – at which point the bush begins sprouting tiny green leaves, which gradually grow until finally the plant is healthy again.
Artist: Lucka Slatner
Dipping Birds is reminiscent of the ‘drinking bird’ novelty toy from years ago. Two large abstract birds, each over two meters tall, stand in a body of water. Both the birds and the water are lit with colour changing LED lights. As the birds dip their beaks into the water, they gradually change colour from head to toe, their hues altering to match the colour of the pond lights. After one bird has ‘soaked up the colour’ it straightens up, leaving the pond in a different light and the other bird repeats the action.
Artist: Claudio Porras
SPREADING LIFE is inspired by the experience of blowing on a dandelion. This installation captures the delicate moment when a dandelion’s seeds float off and spread through the air; a passage of nature — that shows us that as a flower dies, others are born.
The work offers a unique form of interaction, inviting people to blow on two small light sculptures equipped with sensors and crafted into the form of dandelion flowers. To ensure the message is clear, neon is positioned alongside the flowers and forms the word ‘BLOW’ with moving arrows indicating the appropriate spot.
Visitors who approach and take up the invitation to interact with the small dandelions activate a bright animation in an adjacent group of larger flowers — the seeds light up and begin to glow in space and a sound simulates their floating away through the air. Ultimately this lovely work reminds us that blowing on a dandelion represents hopes, dreams and desires.
Artists: Alexander Berlage & Jeremy Allen
A sign based on the original HOLLYWOODLAND sign.
Just in case you didn’t know where you were. 🙂
I seem to be a bit behind in my posting at the moment. I’ll return to my New Zealand posts momentarily.
I’ve even got a few more posts about Cambodia and the Blue Mountains still to come.
This is Part 1 of my VIVID Sydney 2017 series.
All of my photography from this series and previous years of VIVID Sydney going back to 2012 can be found here:
VIVID Sydney page